PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia is on track to have its highest homicide rate in more than a decade. City leaders are now rolling out a new plan to curb the violence.
The new plan is called Group Violence Intervention. It aims to tackle gun violence by, in part, trying to tackle poverty.
It comes as new security video shows another teenager’s last moments as gunfire erupts.
Security video released by Philadelphia police shows a gunman firing multiple shots at a 19-year-old victim during an alleged robbery that turned fatal. It happened July 1 at Front and Indiana Streets in Kensington.
Now officers need help identifying the two suspects.
“The shootings must stop,” said Vanessa Garrett Harley, Philadelphia’s deputy managing director for public safety.
Harley acknowledges it’s been a violent year. The city has seen more than 1,000 shootings and more than 240 people killed so far this year.
But Harley believes the city’s new Group Violence Intervention program will change that by giving people more of an economic opportunity.
“To link people to those individual needs. For some folks having a job is a need and so we may be helping them to get involved, whether it is a job-readiness program or some adult education program, or ultimately a job,” Harley said.
So far, Philadelphia has set aside $750,000 for the program. State Rep. Joanna McClinton, of Southwest Philadelphia, is working to secure another $500,000 from the state.
“The cost of gun violence, there is no price,” McClinton said. “The idea that we can get in front of it and intervene before these incidents occur, it just gives so much hope and encouragement.”
The Group Violence Intervention program is expected to have a soft launch this weekend.