After bloody 2018, Philadelphia unveils gun violence plan

The Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA — Months after declaring Philadelphia’s gun violence a public health emergency, the mayor has presented a road map of broad goals to address the problem.

The initiatives unveiled Thursday by Mayor Jim Kenney take a public health approach to gun violence. The road map aims to tackle poverty, invest in community groups and fund innovative policing tactics.

Police data show there were 351 homicides in Philadelphia in 2018 — the most homicides in the city in over a decade.

Overwhelmingly, the victims tend to be young, black men in neighborhoods struggling with poverty. Philadelphia is the poorest big city in the country.

Kenney ordered his staff to come up with strategies to address the crisis in September.

City Councilman Curtis Jones lauded the set of initiatives, saying “for the first time in a long time, we have a game plan.”