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$1.1 million, 3-year AmeriCorps crime prevention initiative announced

November 4, 2013

Gov. Rick Snyder on Monday announced a partnership with the city of Detroit to attack crime and blight in five neighborhoods. The program will spend $1.1 million in federal grant money from the Corporation for National and Community Service to analyze crime, devise a plan of attack in select neighborhoods and pay 36 AmeriCorps volunteers for their work over 10-12 months. Lyke Thompson, director for the Center of Urban Studies at Wayne State University, will oversee the program. Once the "hot spots," pockets of high-crime are identified, law enforcement and security forces in the area will convene. "We're already doing this in several Detroit neighborhoods," Thompson said. "We identify the hot spots and we get all of the agencies to focus their resources on particular hot spots. All the money here goes into AmeriCorps volunteers and crime analysis." Thompson said residents can expect to see AmeriCorps members doing things such as leaflet distribution to raise awareness of common crimes, board up homes and clean blight, analyze at-home safety, distribute locks and auto-theft prevention devises, hold VIN etching sessions, participate in bike patrols, advise businesses on safety improvements, and organize block clubs and Neighborhood Watch groups.