March 2023

City of Columbus to open Office of Violence Prevention to keep neighborhoods safe

By Steve Levine |

The City of Columbus preparing to create a new crime-fighting tool to keep streets safe.

Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther told ABC 6/FOX 28 he will in announce the creation of the Office of Violence prevention in his State of the City Address next week. The office will be a first-of-its-kind program in the state, which will review and examine prevention and intervention safety programs operated through the city.

“I think it’s going to make a big difference with how we are aligned,” Mayor Ginther said, “how we are coordinating, how we are collaborating”.

Mayor Ginther says staff will work out of the mayor’s office and concentrate on the data and science to look at ways to protect neighborhoods.

“By bringing all this together, this is going to give us the opportunity to see what young people need,” Stephanie Hightower, President & CEO of the Columbus Urban League said, “to see what neighbors need, what families need.”

The new anti-violence office comes as Columbus is seeing a spike in homicides this year.

Columbus police say so far in 2023, officers have been called to investigate 29 homicides. During the same time period last year, 24 homicides were reported.

Last year, the city saw a 33% drop in homicides compared to 2021, when Columbus recorded a record breaking number of 204 homicides.

The mayor says to end the current homicide spike this year, the entire community must work together to end the violence.

“One homicide, one shooting is too many, ” Mayor Ginther said. “We can’t arrest our way out of this. That’s not the police’s job to fix for us. Faith leaders have to step up. Business leaders have to step up. All our community partners have to step up.”

The mayor is expected to announce full details about the Office of Violence Prevention on Tuesday March 21st during a virtual state of the city address at noon. ABC 6/FOX 28 will live stream the event.

Read the article here

Print Friendly, PDF & Email