Syracuse leaders are considering a program focusing on mental health, education, career placement and possibly providing a weekly $100 stipend to people associated with gangs as an incentive to maintain positive behavior.
“The stipend is the incentive for your participation in the program, to participate in the group sessions, the participation in the training, the participation in the case management, the participation and interventions that we're having," said Syracuse Deputy Mayor Sharon Owens. "If you choose not to do that, there is no $100 stipend for you."
Owens said $120,000 would go toward the stipend. Some have questions about the proposal.
What You Need To Know
- Syracuse leaders are considering a program focusing on mental health, education, career placement and possibly providing a weekly $100 stipend to people associated with gangs as an incentive to maintain positive behavior
- Deputy Mayor Sharon Owens says $120,000 would be budgeted for the stipend
- The idea is for the program to start with 50 people
“We're going to be paying the stipends to people who've been involved in criminal activity and members of the gangs," Syracuse Common Councilor Patrick Hogan said. "I don't know what kind of message that sends to hundreds of good kids in this community who work at places like Wegman’s and Burger King."
A few others spoke at Tuesday’s Public Safety Committee meeting, including Clifford Ryan, the founder of OG’s Against Violence. He said his group has helped stop more than 40 shootings and more than 300 stabbings. Ryan hopes to bring his boots-on-the-ground approach to this program.
“I never got anything as far as finances from the city or the county," he said. "I gave this service of myself and my home. OGs Against Violence came to be a part of this program and to bring that aspect of the boots on the ground to the table."
The idea is for the program to start with 50 people.