Minneapolis and St. Paul youth initiatives get national notice

Efforts in Minneapolis to prevent youth violence, including the city’s Blueprint for Action to Prevent Youth Violence, were applauded in a new national report on children and families.

The report, from the National League of Cities, is being released today in Boston at the 2009 National Summit on Your City’s Families.

The report looks at innovations in education and other plans to prevent youth violence, and likes what both Minneapolis and St. Paul are doing.

It calls the Minneapolis Blueprint for Action one of the nation’s three most innovative city models for preventing youth violence.

A Blueprint report last winter says violent juvenile crime throughout the city fell by 29 percent since 2007 and 37 percent since 2006, and in four of five target neighborhoods; the decline in youth violence averaged 39 percent since 2007 and 43 percent since 2006.

Other Minneapolis initiatives featured in the report include: the Minneapolis Promise college access initiative, and the Commission to End Homelessness and its Bridge Center for homeless youth.

The report also recognizes St. Paul for cutting-edge after-school initiatives, including  a circulator bus system that transports children and youth to local programs.

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