There is no quick fix to end violence in our communities. Every person who is harmed is a beloved family member, friend, and neighbor, and the trauma impacts all of us. We know that violence is often the result of decades of chronic disinvestment and requires sustained, intentional action to heal the wounds that have torn apart too many neighborhoods. Consistent with national priorities and best practices, Erin is dedicated to investing in violence prevention and building strong communities to reduce violence and lessen its impacts.
As Council Chairwoman, Erin will support a comprehensive, citywide violence prevention plan. That includes:
- Meaningful investments in jobs, programming, and recreation to create opportunities, particularly for returning citizens and young people, including the Office of Neighborhood Safety and Engagement’s Pathways Program and the Summer Youth Employment Program
- Coordinated, evidence-based, transparent, and well-funded violence intervention programs to match the scale of the epidemic of gun violence, reach neighborhoods before violence increases, and allow evaluation of and improvements to programs
- Robust trauma-informed services, especially for our children, young adults, communities impacted by violence, and people who work in the field of violence prevention
- Collaborative efforts to prevent and address hate crimes that are done with sensitivity to populations that are historically over-policed and often struggle in interactions with law enforcement
Preventing violence also means getting illegal guns off our streets and working to hold gun and ammunition manufacturers and distributors accountable, and Erin knows that requires a coordinated cross-jurisdictional effort and a transparent, ethical, and accountable police department.
Communities that face chronic disinvestment are often the same communities plagued by violence. Every map of DC shows the same racial, socio-economic, and geographic disparities, whether it’s traffic fatalities, Covid-19 vaccination rates and deaths, food deserts, blighted and vacant properties, Internet access, maternal mortality, crime, or any other issue. These disparities are the result of historically segregated neighborhoods and decades of chronic disinvestment in Black Washingtonians. Without attention, they will continue to divide our neighborhoods.
Erin has fought for proactive infrastructure with an equity lens — things like safe streets and safe passage, beautiful playgrounds, parks, and green space, reliable waste management, clean neighborhoods, and robust public transportation — and knows how important it is to constantly engage with residents to correct for historical neglect. With continued focus and oversight to ensure consistent, high-quality government services, Erin knows that these disparities can be corrected and will help make our neighborhoods safer for everyone.
Erin has consistently supported investing in violence prevention as a public health approach to crime and worked for oversight, transparency, and accountability of all our public safety agencies. Erin is a 311 Super User. But she doesn’t just submit 311 requests, she figures out systemic issues and pushes for change, whether that is traffic safety infrastructure, more reliable and accessible public transportation, or more regular trash collection.