To organize large scale conferences that gather community leaders and existing organizations that are represented by the strategic model for reducing violence.
Hoping to learn new approaches to address youth violence, more than 200 elected officials, law enforcement leaders, social service providers and local clergy attended the first ever “Southeast Summit on Youth and Crime Violence,” on January 11, 2008 in Norwalk and walked away convinced that collaboration among stakeholder groups is the best solution. This Summit organized under the “Strategic Pillar Model for Reducing Violence” allowed for the first time churches, government officials and leaders, social services to come together under one roof and share ideas for Spirituality, Prevention, Suppression, Intervention, and Community Organizing aspects in order to reduce violence. The Pillar Model reminiscent of the U.S. Supreme Court Building in Washington D.C., is comprised of a “roof” of Spirituality, two foundations of Community Organizing and Jobs/Jobs Development and the Five Pillars of Permission, Prevention, Intervention, Suppression and Re-entry. Each of the focus areas was the subject of a panel discussion where experts shared their experiences and best practices on these issues.
“Youth violence is not just a police issue, a school issue, it’s a societal issue that impacts us all. Our best hope is to work together and attack the problem aggressively from all sides,” said HOT President Betty Rengifo Tucker, an Executive Vice President for Comerica Bank. HOT and the Office of Los Angeles County Supervisor Don Knabe hosted the meeting that attracted elected leaders, police officials, social service providers, church leaders, school district officials, business leaders and others who have a vested interest in minimizing the impacts of youth violence and gang activity in the community. These stakeholders represented the cities of Whittier, Pico Rivera, Santa Fe Springs, Norwalk, Montebello, Downey, Hawaiian Gardens and Artesia. “It’s a huge problem that needs a big solution,” Supervisor Knabe said. “Law Enforcement is essential to eradicating the problem, but it can’t do it alone.” In addition to Supervisor Knabe U.S. Representative Linda Sanchez, California State Assembly member Tony Mendoza, Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca, Whittier Mayor Owen Newcomer, Pico Rivera Mayor Ron Beilke and Norwalk Mayor Rick Ramirez each spoke passionately against youth violence”.