BALTIMORE (WJZ) — The Mayor’s Office On Neighborhood Safety And Engagement, also known as “MONSE,” dispatched several members to Tench Tilghman Elementary/Middle School Friday.
This was a strategic move because of a mass shooting less than a half-mile from the school.READ MORE: Anne Arundel County Executive Adopts "Vision Zero Plan" To Make County Roads Safer
One man died in that mass shooting on North Rose Street last month and three others were hurt.
MONSE leaders say they use data from 311 and 911 calls and have found that people are asking for therapy sessions and activities for kids—especially after traumatic events.
“Some of the children have not been addressed with their trauma,” said Rick Fontaine Leandry, a neighborhood stabilization response manager with MONSE. “Last year during their back-to-school rally, there was a shooting right in front of the school that children had to run into the school, and that has never been addressed. These are children and if they become desensitized to these traumatic events, then it’s doomed to repeat itself.”
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MONSE has $50 million in funding for the next three years. The department started operations in January of 2021, but with Baltimore’s concerning levels of crime, they are under pressure to prove that their strategies are working.
Members of Baltimore’s city council demanded a response from city leaders on the progress of their violence reduction strategy. In a letter to the city council, MONSE’s leader, Director Shantay Jackson, issued an 88-page letter to Baltimore city council members.
“The public servants who make up this agency, including myself, feel a great deal of urgency to lay a strong foundation from the ground up that ultimately leads to a safer Baltimore—a foundation that we know will produce sustainable outcomes for our residents rather than a facade of short-term safety,” Jackson said in the letter. “Understanding that this is not overnight work, MONSE has remained diligently focused on meeting the ambitious timelines and targets we established during our foundational year so that we are in a position to maintain course and ramp up our efforts moving forward.”MORE NEWS: East Baltimore Sinkhole Prompts City To Shut Down Part Of North Avenue Until Further Notice
Director Jackson also said a total of $23,655,000 of funding from the American Rescue Plan funding has been allocated to assist with gun violence prevention.