The City recently submitted its final proposal to the 2018 Bloomberg Mayors Challenge! The Challenge, which provides grant funding to the winners, requires projects to be a new idea for that city and something no other city has done to scale.
Our proposal, submitted on August 20, 2018, focuses on improving outcomes for youth who interact with the justice system through the creation of a Hub for Juvenile Justice Services.
What is the Hub for Juvenile Justice Services?
If funded, the Hub would be a 24/7, trauma-informed integrated service center.
Staff at the Hub would receive training on how to best respond to youth and families, mitigate trauma, and make referrals to prevention or other social services.
Most importantly, the Hub would provide juveniles immediate and long-term access to social services and diversion programs through a centralized, non-police facility. The Hub will divert youth from the juvenile justice system into other, more effective services to address underlying behaviors.
Why it this so important?
This innovative project would create a national model for how the justice system treats children at point of entry.
The Hub will provide police with an alternative to placing a child in a holding cell for many hours. Instead, youth and families will be connected with community-based resources, such as those for education or health, in a trauma-informed setting.
This will help prevent these young people from heading down a path of further incarceration.
“I am convinced that the Hub for Juvenile Justice Services will change the course of young lives and spare many from the cycle of violence that besets Philadelphia,” explains Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross.
In effect, if Bloomberg Philanthropies selects Philadelphia, the Hub would be a game changer for our local juvenile justice system and our ongoing justice reform efforts.
In February 2018, Bloomberg Philanthropies named Philadelphia as one of 35 finalist cities. Those cities received $100,000 each to test and refine the ideas.
According to Bloomberg Philanthropies, more than 300 cities submitted ideas in 2017. Ultimately, they will select one city for a grand prize of $5 million and four other cities will receive $1 million each to implement their ideas.
We expect to hear which cities receive this vital funding sometime in fall 2018.