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Indy Cease Fire: A Collaborative Approach to Violence Reduction

By Dane Nutty
Published October 30, 2018

Impact of the first gun buyback held on Saturday, Nov. 3 as part of the Indy Cease Fire movement.

"Every day, our officers are working to build stronger relationships in their beats and hold accountable those who perpetuate violence," said IMPD Chief Bryan Roach. "To fully address the violence that impacts our community, we must continue to address its root causes and remove unwanted weapons from our neighborhoods. When community and police work together in these efforts, we can make our neighborhoods safer and stronger."

Complex issues require collaborative approaches. On Fri. Nov. 2 and Sat. Nov. 3, the Indy Public Safety Foundation (IPSF), Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD), Indianapolis Office of Public Health and Safety (OPHS), as well as community organizations and the faith-based community partnered for a community-driven initiative aimed at reducing violence in our community.

Employment and Resource Fair

On Friday, November 2nd, OPHS hosted an Employment and Resource Fair from 10am – 2pm at the MLK Center. The fair brought over 20 organizations and employers directly into the Butler-Tarkington neighborhood, providing access to job opportunities, job training programs, and community-based social services. The fair comes as part of the City’s comprehensive violence reduction strategy, which includes investments in neighborhood-level interventions and expanded access to wrap-around social services for those most in need. In August, the MLK Center was awarded funding though the City’s first round of violence prevention grants to support their creative methods of engaging with underserved neighbors.

Gun Buyback

On Saturday, November 3rd, IMPD and the Indy Public Safety Foundation supported a gun buyback in the parking lot of the MLK Center from 12pm – 5pm. This community-led event provided a safe venue for residents to receive money in return for unwanted or unused firearms. Residents who brought a valid ID received a minimum of $100 for their unwanted firearm – no questions asked. IMPD secured the location and ensured the safe handling of firearms that were turned over to law enforcement.

The Indy Public Safety Foundation invested $35,000 to fund this event and the Indy Cease Fire movement, and this investment has already sparked interest from the community. Mothers Against Violence, a local organization addressing the effects of gun violence on the family, and local surgeon Dr. Jason Bowlds both helped provide funds to extend the buyback's impact.

"We are excited to see the collaborative participation from our community in these types of violence reduction strategies," said IPSF Director Dane Nutty. "In order to continue efforts like this, however, we need your help."

The first buyback - as part of the Indy Cease Fire movement - has already made significant impact. IPSF is challenging individuals and the business community to provide funds to continue the Indy Cease Fire movement. If you would like to support continued efforts to reduce violence in our city, visit our donation page to make a tax-deductible contribution today.


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