East Palo Alto continues 'high risk' outreach

Second 'call in' invites those involved with drugs, gangs or violence to meet with police, community

East Palo Alto community leaders and police held their second Operation Ceasefire "call in" Tuesday (April 26), meeting with people identified as being at high-risk of criminal activity, the police department has announced.

While only four individuals attended the meeting with law enforcement, social service providers and community leaders, one attendee who had not actually been invited showed up because he had heard about the program and wanted to participate, the department stated in a news release.

Call-in meetings are a method of diverting people from violent behavior by offering offenders and would-be offenders services that provide alternatives to destructive actions. It is followed by enforcement programs to hold accountable those who fail to take advantage of the services and continue to victimize community.

The City of East Palo Alto is one of nine cities in California who received a grant from the state governor to participate in Operation Ceasefire, a national anti-violence program.

The first call-in was conducted March 1 with 11 participants, all of whom were on probation and/or parole. Of those, none have been arrested since the meeting. Two declined to participate in services.

Of the rest, two have received jobs; five are working with the San Mateo County Workforce Investment Board to receive employment training and job referral services. Five have received dental or medical services and all nine have participated in follow-up counseling and support services.

The police and community leaders emphasize their stance against violence; state the consequences of further violence; and offer help for those who want it.

Of the four who attended Tuesday's call-in, three registered to receive services, the police said.

— Palo Alto Weekly staff

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