New York City will spend $127 million on programs designed to help young black and Latino men.
As part of the private-public partnership billionaire Mayor Michael Bloomberg will kick in $30 million from his foundation and hedge fund manager George Soros will match that amount. The remaining $67.5 million will be paid by the city.
The programs will include job placement, fatherhood classes and training for probation officers and school staff on how to help the young men get ahead. More than a dozen city agencies will be involved, according to the Associated Press.
About 315,000 Black and Latino men between the ages of 16 and 24 will be targeted as part of the program.
The mayor's office says the initiative is the nation's "boldest and most comprehensive effort to tackle the broad disparities slowing the advancement of black and Latino young men."
Ohio, Philadelphia and San Diego have similar programs in place to help fight crime, unemployment and poor health amongst young Black men.
Writes the Associated Press:
"One key component will be an overhaul of the Department of Probation, which supervises nearly 30,000 New Yorkers, most of whom are Black and Latino males, according to the mayor's office. The department will open five satellite offices in neighborhoods with high populations of at-risk youth, with the aim of connecting men on probation to work and educational opportunities and reducing recidivism."
"Of the funds, $18 million will go to 'transformative mentoring and literacy services,' according to a news release, while $24 million will go to a school program called the Expanded Success Initiative. The latter aims to close the so-called achievement gap between racial and ethnic groups in graduation rates. The city will also announce new measures to 'hold schools accountable' for the performance of Black and Latino boys.
"Another $25 million will expand Jobs-Plus, which works with residents of public housing projects."
(Photo: UPI/Roger L. Wollenberg /LANDOV)