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Chicago mayor plans to address violence with more spending, guaranteed income

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(The Center Square) – Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson said he plans to address public safety issues by investing in people.

Speaking at a public forum in the Little Village neighborhood, the mayor blamed Chicago’s violence on disinvestment by previous administrations.

“My vision for safety in Chicago is that every single neighborhood has safe spaces, and that we are fully funding our public accommodations: education, transportation, healthcare, jobs,” Johnson explained.

Chicago Police Superintendent Larry Snelling said it is important for police and members of the community to work together.

“We have to humanize each other. It can’t be us and them. It’s gotta be us,” Snelling said.

Snelling stated that police cannot address public safety alone.

Johnson’s administration developed the People’s Plan for Community Safety. Johnson said he wants to create stable neighborhoods by providing economic security.

“Violence is essentially the symptom of resources being snatched away from our communities,” Johnson said.

Deputy Mayor Garien Gatewood connected safety with guaranteed income.

“You look at work like Treatment not Trauma, you look at guaranteed basic income, you look at all this wraparound support that we will get to and why we have taken such a targeted approach to safety and violence in the city,” Gatewood said.

Gatewood previously served as director of the Illinois Justice Project. The group helped guide policy support of the SAFE-T Act, which Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed into law in 2021. The law eliminated cash bail in Illinois.

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