Crime reduction work in city to continue
by DAVID DAVIS, Managing Editor
Mar 06, 2013 | 837 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A three-year pilot program funded by the state to reduce crime in south and east Cleveland ends June 30.

The purpose of the $800,000 Tennessee Targeted Community Crime Reduction Grant is to reduce crime related to the use of alcohol and drugs and to break the familial cycle of incarceration and recidivism.

The next step is to continue the coalition of agencies and programs without state money.

“The money stops, but that doesn’t mean the project has to stop,” project consultant David Watts said Tuesday during a committee gathering. “We are going to sustain as much of it as we can.”

He expects the Office of Criminal Justice to ask the different partners if the grant was effective.

“We are going to compile a summary of your answers to help us determine what we want to sustain and what we will just let fade away,” he said.

He said the year-end report compiled by evaluators is finished. Watts expects Cleveland to look good though he also expects auditors found minor discrepancies.

“I expect there will be a few little things that people who audit things have to find. That’s what we pay them for,” he said.

Though he expects minor issues, he informed agency heads that auditors could ask for explanations of certain items.

“I don’t think they’ll question anything you’ve done, they may just want an explanation of what you meant,” he said.

The grant funded two police officers and a patrol car, and services provided by the Boys & Girls Clubs, Behavioral Research Institute, Bradley County Juvenile Courts and the city of Cleveland.

Reba Terry, executive director of The Caring Place, presented an overview of services provided to impoverished individuals and families. Net income is the basis of qualifications. She said people might not qualify according to government standards based on gross income, but some have issues with wage garnishment.

The Caring Place also participates in Charity Check to prevent duplication of services.

She said during 2012, The Caring Place provided the following services:

- 3,734 families were served;

- 219 homeless were served;

- 528 were served by Neighbors in Need;

- 162 tons of food were distributed;

- 751 children received diapers through the diaperLove program;

- 200 elementary school children received Sac Pacs each week.

Terry said they distribute 90 diapers a month for 12 months to qualifying families. Each family can receive diapers for two children.

The organization, located at 130 Wildwood Ave., provides food, clothing, a community garden, social work, “diaperLove” and Neighbors in Need.

For more information about how to volunteer, contribute or ask for help, please call 423-472-4414.