In the last 20 years San Jose has had a major increase in homicides. San Jose recently staged its fifth annual Crime and Gang Prevention Summit. San Jose has been working very closely with Major Chuck Reed and his Gang Task Force. Some might wonder why the sudden increase in gang activity in San Jose? There are many different reasons for this increase but with the programs that San Jose is currently using hopefully this issue can start declining. San Jose has instilled a Late Night PRogramming which helps youth leave gangs. This can sometimes be a dangerous transition for members of gangs and this program try’s to alleviate that danger. Some members of gangs fear retaliation when leaving the gang. Leaving the gang life is extremely difficult. Many gang members want to leave the gang life but fear that the process is too difficult and dangerous to do. The Late Night Program has helped numerous gang members in San Jose leave gangs and turn their lives around for the better.

San Jose is also trying to block the entire issue of gangs. In order to try and stop this issue we must start at an elementary age. You must instill values at a young age before issues arise causing children to go into gangs. I believe something very important for children to have is a safe after school program. Most parents work until 5 o’clock or later and children get out of school between two and four. These unattended hours are when children get into the most trouble. They basically have 3 or 4 hours to do whatever they want without their parents being home. If children had a sport, activity, or club to participate during this time I believe that could help the problem.

Other cities should use San Jose’s efforts as a model for their own cities. If more cities would use prevention programs maybe gang violence would minimize across the country.