Happy Inauguration Day!

Baltimore City’s new leadership was sworn into office today.  I’m more hopeful than ever that the city will move forward—and that Maryland will move forward.

Last week, we took a step in the right direction on crime. With $600,000 in initial funding, Baltimore City re-committed to Group Violence Reduction Strategy (GVRS) 

Using GVRS as a way to end homicides has been a cornerstone of my platform to make Baltimore City safer since we started our campaign. GVRS is proven around the country to be one of the most effective techniques cities can use to end high homicide rates. (My other cornerstones for a safer city are free, widely available Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and much stronger gun control.)

I’m glad for this step forward AND the truth is we’ll need millions of dollars to make GVRS work in Baltimore. Borrowing an idea from my mentor, the author of Bleeding Out, I propose that for every lost life, the State commit $30,000 to funding strategies like GVRS and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy in Baltimore. Based on today’s 312 homicides, that would be an additional $9,360,000 for these woefully underfunded strategies that work. 

My strategies for making Baltimore City and Maryland safer run hand-in-hand with my strategies for:

  1. Slashing property taxes (vacancies breed crime but Baltimore can save services and get billions in new investment with a property tax rate slashed to $0.086 per $100); and 
  2. Finishing Rev. Dr. MLK’s work on economic equality (poverty breeds crime but Baltimore’s incredible energy can create the middle class, not just attract it from somewhere else). 

We need to raise $7,000 this December to compete and make Baltimoreans safer, healthier and wealthier. Will you please give today?