The stakes are high - Brooklynian

The stakes are high

By putting so much money into trying to engage young minority men, Bloomberg's new program puts the stakes quite high.

In a few years we will see if 127 million dollars was enough to break the cycle for its participants .

If doesn't turn out to be successful, we will we have to wait for some model that uses none of the present techniques before we attempt to address this problem again?

Will it be a victory for the naysayers?


  • with 127 million dollars wow, they could of just paid the kids for life would of been a better idea.

  • AW-

    For the heck of it, let's imagine this program will run for 5 years and attempt to reach 10,000 of NYC's most at-risk youth.

    $127M/ 5 years = $25.4M per year. Cost is $2540 per youth, per year. My prediction: Not a strong enough program to break the cycle of poverty and crime.

    So, let's try to reach fewer youth, 5000. The cost we be around $5000 per youth, per year. My prediction: Not a strong enough program to break the cycle of poverty and crime.

    So, lets try 1000 youth. Cost is around $25,000, per youth per year. My prediction: This might work.

    That's about what a year of intensive services (education, job training, case management, mental health, etc) costs at these reputable programs that try to reach very high risk youth:

    Job Corps


    Saint Vincent Service's American Dream program.


    Children's Village

    ...if properly implemented, this program might radically change the lives of 1000 youth. If it tries to reach too many, it may end up effectively reaching very few.

  • here is a better program, send all criminals regardless of race to free labor camps and they are supported by their labor.

    people who believe in reforming criminals are haven't lived in a poor neighbhood and constantly robbed or beaten and the fear haven't set in yet.

    these kids are living a life style a culture of crime. can't change that with putting them into programs. how much money is enough?

  • nothing is "free". community would want your work camp, and you'd have to provide guards to make sure they didn't simply leave.

    Let's suppose they made widgets. Your prisoners would have to make huge profits off the widgets to pay for the guards and the land and their food, and I suspect whoever currently makes widgets would be upset as a result of being undercut by your work camp's unfair advantage.

  • no community wants to pay for a bunch of lazy criminal forever either, unless its liberal whites with guilt in their minds because of their ancestors sins.

    they have a choice call not committing crime.

  • I wonder how many full time scholarships that could buy good kids. why throw good money at a bad investment. if this was business, I would put more money into good investments.

  • So, when it is all said and done, if Bloomberg's valiant effort is deemed a failure, should we simply go back to putting folks in prison until they are too old to commit serious crimes?

    P.S. The programs I list above work do actually work for a percentage of the kids who go to them.

    But, yes, they cost a lot of money.

    And, yes, many kids are not reached and end up going to prison/poverty anyway.

  • its called birth control and not feeding their damn offspring of the criminals. how many generations are we suppose to be responsibility for other peoples decisions?

    we live in a finite resource world. yet we are throwing billions of dollars away each year on people who don't give a shit about their fellow man.

    they wouldn't think twice of blowing their fellow man away. why should resources of the community be wasted on those people who don't care.

    hell they don't even care about their own offspring. how many of them know their fathers?

    I'm just a realist. resources wasted could be use in education for everyone. think about all the resources wasted housing the criminals and educating them.

  • you sound as if Bloomberg should not bother.

    ...he should accept that they will be prisoners.

    Hmmmm. Prison costs about $40k per year.

    What do we do in year 4, when our $127M have been spent on the 10,000 youth?

  • prison should cost 0. meaning if you don't work dangerous or dirty jobs, most people won't do, you starve. should make money.

    prisoners should be paid, but only after the state takes a cut from their rent and food.

  • I think your model of having people pay for their own incarceration isn't feasible. I've gotta think Arizona or Mississippi would be doing it if it was allowed.

    Let's return to talking about Bloomberg's plan....

    Why don't you think it will work?

  • its not feasible in the current state because simply criminals have more rights than citizens.

    once you commit serious crime and get sent to prison you get reduce rights as a citizen.

    many other countries besides liberalize west their work camps make money.

  • Bloomberg's plan is to reach youth that are not presently incarcerated.

    Granted, his "target audience" is incarcerated regularly, but (as I understand it) the majority of the funds for his program will be spend on trying to reach those not presently in prison.

  • For example, it was the Mayor's frustration with the involvement of young Black and Latino males in the criminal justice system that sparked this entire effort. With three out of four men who leave Rikers returning, it is clear that our justice systems are a revolving door. Key to breaking this cycle is the role of the Department of Probation. Under the leadership of Deputy Mayor Linda Gibbs and Commissioner Vincent Schiraldi, and with nearly $20 million dollars in support, the DOP is transforming its role from that of compliance machine to an engaged partner. DOP's goal is to work with their clients (almost all are young Black and Latino males) in the neighborhoods where they live by providing them the supports—education, connection to employment, help cleaning up their RAP sheets, mentoring—to make it so that they do not commit another crime. They can turn the page to the next chapter in their lives, and our communities are safer for it.

    it seems to me it was design to help criminals.

  • AW wrote: it seems to me it was design to help criminals.

    It could be that he doesn't care about the criminals at all, and just wants less crime.

    Would such an ulterior motive be bad?

  • armchair_warrior said:

    no community wants to pay for a bunch of lazy criminal forever either, unless its liberal whites with guilt in their minds because of their ancestors sins.

    they have a choice call not committing crime.


    I think programs can help though.

    You gotta remember, for a lot of these kids "the hood" is all they know. Just being exposed to something different + seeing the hood life isn't the only option can do wonders. Even if it doesn't work for EVERY kid, if it works for a decent amount it will be a success IMO. Better some than none.

  • Nothing can save Bloomberg's ill-advised and abysmal third term. Thank you, Ms. Quinn.

  • The first batch of contracts is awarded.

    NYNP wrote: NYC Probation Announces

    Young Adult Award DeterminationsThe NYC Department of Probation is has announced the 11 organizations that were determined eligible for Young Adult Justice Scholars and Young Adult Justice Community awards. Both programs are part of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg's Young Men's Initiative (YMI), the nation's boldest and most comprehensive effort to tackle the broad disparities that are slowing the advancement of black and Latino young men (more information on YMI here). The programs will serve young adults between the ages of 16 and 24 who are involved in the criminal justice system. The contracts will be for three years from January 1, 2012 through December 31, 2015, with an option to renew for two additional one-year periods.Justice Scholars focuses on education and introduces participants to potential careers. Justice Community is a more flexible model that adapts to the current educational and employment status of each participant and engages him or her in community benefit projects. The ultimate goals of these programs are to help build stronger and safer communities, reduce crime and recidivism and promote lifelong educational gains, career exploration, and employment attainment and retention for court-involved young adults in New York City."The Young Adult Justice Scholars and Young Adult Justice Community programs embody the Department of Probation's evidence-based belief that the best way to secure public safety is by providing our clients with the tools they need to break the cycle of crime,” said Department of Probation Commissioner Vincent N. Schiraldi. "We look forward to partnering with these organizations to make a real and lasting difference in the lives of court-involved young people. In the case of the Justice Community program, we will also impact New York City neighborhoods by connecting participants to projects designed to address local needs.”The following organizations were determined eligible for awards in these associated Community Districts:Justice Community Awards:Fund for the City of New York/Center for Court Innovation -- BK 16;The Osborne Association, Inc. -- BX 1,2,3;Center for Community Alternatives -- BK 5;The Children's Village, Inc. -- MN 9, 11;Research Foundation of CUNY (LaGuardia Community College) -- QNS 12;Justice Scholars Awards:The Fortune Society -- BX 1,2,3,4,5,6,9; BK 3,4,5,8,13,16; MN 9,10,11; and QNS 1,12,14South Bronx Overall Development Corporation (SoBRO) -- BX 1,2,3,4,5,6,9;Community Mediation Services, Inc. -- QNS 12;New York City Mission Society -- MNH 9,10,11;The Center for Alternatives Sentencing and Employment Services, Inc. -- BK 3,4,5,8,13,16; MN 9,10,11; BX 1,2,3,4,5,6,9; and QNS 1, 12, 14;Graham Windham -- BK 3,5,8,16.


  • This week, the next batch of contracts was awarded:

    NYC Probation Announces AIM Selections

    The New York City Department of Probation (DOP) has announced the three organizations that have been determined eligible to operate AIM (Advocate, Intervene, Mentor) programs. AIM is an intensive mentoring and advocacy program for young people on probation. Participants are placed with advocates who provide structure and guidance while connecting them to untapped community resources. It is part of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg's Young Men's Initiative.

    AIM will serve adolescents between the ages of 13 and 18 who are facing a violation of probation due to chronic absenteeism and/or chronic unresponsiveness to interventions and engagement strategies. In addition to being under the supervision of a Probation Officer, each AIM participant will be paired with an advocate. Advocate/mentors will work with no more than four young people at a time; help build and strengthen social bonds between the client and the community in which they live; and will be available to the youth and their families 24/7.The following organizations have been determined eligible for awards to serve these Community Districts: Community Mediation Services, Queens CDs 12 & 13;

    Good Shepherd Services, Brooklyn CDs 3,5,16 & 17;

    Youth Advocate Programs, Bronx CDs 1,2,3,4,5 &,6.

    Source: NY Nonprofit Press

    P.S. Brooklyn's CD 8 does not look like it will be served.

  • In related news, other cities (including ones overseas) are looking at NYC being held up as a model for how to address juvenile crime:

  • white guilt and there is alot of it in the uk.

  • White guilt? That sounds like a complex, perhaps incurable psychological condition.

    I suspect that a lot of the alternative to incarceration programs are motivated by nothing more than a desire to save money. intent to help the individuals involved is secondary, at best.

    Is saving taxpayer money bad? Are we obligated to create jobs for upstate communities that depend upon the prison industry?

  • save money would be to throw out tons of appeals to death and make the prisoners pay for the bullet and no more welfare if you are child of one.

    If you are on it, sent to the country to pick fruits etc.... do the dirty work of the illegals that are currently missing from the country farms.

  • The solutions you propose don't seem feasible in the present socio-political-economic environment of the US, much less that of NYS and NYC.

    Louisiana and Texas might be the states that come closest to implementing your methods.

  • such waste of resources for housing prisoners and educating them and feeding their spawn etc...

    would be better spent on productive citizens.

  • Freeing up funds to spend on items like infrastructure and police are a big part of why they are scaling back the prison system, and looking for alternatives.

    It also prevents them from having to raise taxes and/or incur debt; neither of which is favored at the moment.

  • AW-

    You do realize that Bloomberg is spending his private money on this, right?

  • I'm talking in a general rant about social programs and prison etc... waste of money and resources.

  • Bloomberg appears to take a different position.

    By spending his own money, he hopes to ensure that it is spent in a more efficient, effective manner that the often ineffective programs government traditionally funds.

    This is not a small, obscure demonstration program which will not measure the successes and failures of its efforts.

    Unlike many program, this one is being watched too closely to be able get away with exaggerating its successes and mitigating its failures.

    By making this very public "bet", Bloomberg hopes to show that even the most "disconnected, at-risk" young men can be diverted from a life in which they are a liability to society.

    If he is successful, other rich people, private foundations and governments will attempt to replicate "Bloomberg's New York City" program.

    If he fails, the programs will be used by many to show that even the best designed, best funded programs are unable to reach such young men, and -therefore- society should incarcerate them for long periods of time, at the first sign of criminality.

    In other words, if you are confident that such programs are a waste of money, you should want this program to be even larger than it is....

    Do you really want to have to listen to some bleeding heart liberal state that another $50M (127 + 50 = 177M) could have made all the difference?

    Because it isn't taxpayer money that is being spent, this is unique opportunity: Naysayers have can want more spending, while simultaneously hoping it goes to waste.

  • i don't care criminal and their spawn, i care poor people who aren't damn criminals and don't get the chances and money thrown at them that criminals get.

    see my point why do they spend so much money on bad bets.

  • If history is an accurate guide, Bloomberg appears to make good bets with his personal money.

    ....perhaps he is expanding the ways in which he measures Return On Investment.

  • Mr Williams points out that the program is already a year old, yet states is has not improved his neighborhood.

    Did he think this was going to be quick? Has he put in an application to work at one of the nonprofits that has received awards?

  • As much as I hate to applaud him, Louis Farrakhan had the right idea with his million man march. The only problem was that the only men who showed up were people who already agreed with him. The ones that needed to be changed were no where to be seen.

  • By attempting to provide social services to the NYC population most at risk of violence, Bloomberg has become a larger target for politicians who oppose his every move.

    It's understandable, but sort of ironic.

  • More contracts awarded:

    Probation Selects Phase II AIM Providers

    The New York City Department of Probation (DOP) has selected two organizations that are eligible to operate AIM (Advocate, Intervene, Mentor) programs. AIM is an intensive mentoring and advocacy program for young people on probation. Participants are placed with advocates who provide structure and guidance while connecting them to untapped community resources. The groups are:

    • Union Settlement Association, serving Manhattan (CD # 9, 10, 11 & 12), and• Fund for the City of New York/ Center for Court Innovation, serving Staten Island (CD # 1 & 2)AIM is part of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg's Young Men's Initiative. The program serves adolescents between the ages of 13 and 18 who are facing a violation of probation due to chronic absenteeism and/or chronic unresponsiveness to interventions and engagement strategies. In addition to being under the supervision of a Probation Officer, each AIM participant will be paired with an advocate. Advocate/mentors will work with no more than four young people at a time; help build and strengthen social bonds between the client and the community in which they live; and will be available to the youth and their families 24/7.It is In Phase One of the program, three organizations received awards: Community Mediation Services to serve Jamaica, Queens; Good Shepherd Services to serve East New York, Brooklyn; and Youth Advocate Programs to Serve the South Bronx.

  • More jobs are posted:

    Program Director

    Union Settlement Association

  • NYC Probation Opens South Bronx NeON

    The New York City Department of Probation opened the new South Bronx Neighborhood Opportunity Network (NeON) yesterday. Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Probation Commissioner Vincent Schiraldi were on hand for the ribbon cutting. The NeONs are a central element of both Mayor Bloomberg's Young Men's Initiative (YMI) and a major transformation of the Probation Department's operations and culture.

    NeONs are community-based probation offices in the neighborhoods where probation clients live, connecting them to local programs, opportunities and resources. Historically, probation offices have been located near courthouses, requiring clients to travel to see their probation officers. With this city-wide transformation, probation offices are being brought into the communities where they are needed, providing ongoing and direct support for clients as well as opportunities and resources.Each NeON is connected to a network of education, business and community-based organizations – such as literacy and skills building programs, work and employment preparation, health care, academic and technical education and mentoring. These resources are designed to strengthen the young person's connection to neighborhood, family and employment, as well as improve their sense of self-worth and keep them from returning to the criminal justice system. The rate at which New York City probation clients violate the terms of their probation is a third of the statewide rate – 6 percent as compared to 19 percent – and this initiative will further build on the City's success.Mayor Bloomberg opened the first NeON in Brownsville in December 2011; since then, the Department of Probation has opened additional NeONs in Harlem and South Jamaica. The South Bronx NeON features a Resource Hub, a vibrantly decorated and resource-rich space where clients can make the most of the time before and after they meet with their probation officer. The Mayor made the announcement at the South Bronx Neighborhood Opportunity Network, where he was joined by Department of Citywide Administrative Services Commissioner Edna Wells Handy, Assembly Members Eric Stevenson and Carmen Arroyo, State Senator Ruth Hassell-Thompson, Bronx District Attorney Robert Johnson, Bronx County Supreme Court Justice Efrain Alvarado, Lonni Tanner, Director of See ChangeNYC, and Maurice Good, Program Director of the South Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation."The opening of the South Bronx Neighborhood Opportunity Network – the fourth new community network we've opened this year – will help more people on probation get their lives back on track, and avoid returning to the justice system.” said Mayor Bloomberg. "As part of our Young Men's Initiative, these new networks are already proving effective in Harlem, South Jamaica and Brownsville. We expect that the impact will be just as great here in the South Bronx and, with the goal of reducing recidivism, help us keep making the safest big city in the nation even safer.”"A key component of the Neighborhood Opportunity Networks is connecting people to partner organizations to help strengthen their ties to the community,” said Deputy Mayor Gibbs. "We want to help support these young men as they further their education, improve their health, gain successful employment s and make responsible decisions for themselves and their families.”"The South Bronx NeON embodies the NYC Department of Probation's community-based approach to ensuring public safety,” said Commissioner Schiraldi. "It's not just that we are moving into neighborhoods where our clients live – thanks to the Young Men's Initiative, we are also connecting them to local programs that can help them earn their GED or high school diploma, get a job, or connect with a mentor.”For more on the Probation Department's efforts to decentralize and enhance its operations -- and the range of new programs it is operating through the Young Men's Initiative -- see "The Probation Transformation" in the upcoming September issue of NYNP.

  • NEW YORK — Nearly 4,000 young people have participated in the first year of a sweeping effort to help young minority men in ways ranging from job internships to inmate education, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Thursday.

    Financed partly with the billionaire mayor's own money, the three-year, $127 million Young Men's Initiative is intended to lower poverty, crime, unemployment and dropout rates among black and Latino males between 16 and 24.

    The effort takes aim at a host of what officials see as underlying problems. Its year-one report describes initiatives as diverse as a "fatherhood academy" at a community college and a directive erasing criminal-history questions from initial employment applications for many city agencies. The idea is aimed at fields in which a conviction might not be relevant.Minority advocates have praised Young Men's Initiative as extending a hand to a group burdened by problems that have persisted over generations. But others have questioned the project's fairness and effectiveness.Bloomberg said he was encouraged by the work so far — at this early stage, mainly changing policies and starting programs."In our first year, we've made real progress," he said at a news conference at a Brooklyn detention center for juvenile offenders.Some 45 youngsters are now living at the juvenile center and in other facilities overseen by the city, instead of state-run centers that often were farther from their families and gave educational credits that didn't transfer to city schools, city officials said. The city pushed for a state law that allowed the local alternative, starting last month.Other aspects of the program include planning for eight new high schools with an emphasis on helping young black and Hispanic teens succeed; engaging minority men as anti-violence advocates in three areas so far; and opening four upbeat, employment-focused probation offices thus far in neighborhoods, instead of the often-drab spots in courthouses."I can't believe I'm actually saying this, but this room is somewhere I'm happy to be," probationer Anthony Berrios, 17, said at the September opening at one of the overhauled offices, in the South Bronx.Officials say they have good reason to focus on the city's young black and Hispanic men: Their poverty rate has been 50 percent higher, their unemployment rate 60 percent higher, and their dropout and teen fatherhood rates also higher than those of their white and Asian peers, according to a report when the initiative started in August 2011."We cannot continue to walk away from this population," Bloomberg said Thursday. "These are kids who have troubles, and if we don't help them, their lives will be a cycle of disaster, but it will also impact your life and my life and our kids' lives."But some observers have questioned whether the $67 million might have been better spent on other ways to address disadvantage — and whether it is right to focus on one demographic."Discrimination is never a benefit. ... It's in (proponents') minds that black and Hispanic men need their charity because they have these stereotypes about black and Hispanic men as being criminals, as being undereducated," said Michael Meyers, executive director of the New York Civil Rights Coalition, a group that has complained previously about other city programs aimed at black men and girls.The city says the Young Men's Initiative programs don't specifically exclude other ethnic groups or women, though they often are positioned to affect 16-to-24-year-old black or Hispanic men. Statistics weren't immediately available on how many people from other demographics have participated.

    — Associated Press


  • tick, tick, tick.

    Thats the sound of social unrest arriving in a few years if we don't address the problem of unemployed, unattached, broke NYC youth:

  • ...paid for by YMI and other funding sources

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