Jeffrey Butts, who runs the Research and Evaluation Center at John Jay College, says setting up cure violence programs in a way that generates evidence of what methods work to reduce shootings will be essential going forward...
“They should not operate in hostility to law enforcement…but they need to operate almost autonomously,” said Jeffrey Butts, director of the Research and Evaluation Center of the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City. “If the neighborhood starts to think that these programs are in cahoots with law enforcement, the young people in the neighborhood will stop talking to the workers.”
"The movement needs support with evidence and research, not just clever arguments,” Butts said.
Officials in Kansas City ask for evidence of effectiveness for the Cure Violence approach. A 2017 review of two sites in New York City by John Jay College of Criminal Justice at The City University of New York found that gun violence rates decreased in the two catchment areas reviewed — gun injuries dropping about 50% in one neighborhood after the Cure Violence program was implemented.
Studies conducted of two CMS sites by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice’s Research and Evaluation Center found that, in addition to a decline in shootings over two years, trust in law enforcement increased, and fewer people turned to violence. "Over time, attitudes did change, especially in the Cure Violence neighborhoods,” said Sheyla Delgado, a researcher at John Jay who has coauthored several CMS studies.
Jeffrey Butts joined Yuripzy Morgan on WBAL News Radio in Baltimore, where City officials are launching new efforts to reduce community violence.
Jeffrey Butts joins a discussion about the effectiveness of violence interruption programs in Baltimore and elsewhere.
On the September 19, 2021 episode of City Watch on WBAI 99.5 FM, Host Jeff Simmons focused on gun violence prevention with guests: Erica Ford, Founder and CEO of Life Camp Inc., New York City Councilmember Adrienne Adams, and Dr. Jeffrey Butts, Research Professor and Director of the Research and Evaluation Center at John Jay College of Criminal Justice.
Jeffrey Butts said that while he is encouraged by1 the Biden administration's public commitment to gun violence research, long hobbled by years of underfunding at the federal level, more attention needs to be paid to community-based programs that don't rely on police intervention.
New York City’s Cure Violence programs found shootings and gun injuries dropped in two neighborhoods where such programs were in place between 2013 and 2017, according to an evaluation led by Jeffrey Butts, director of the Research and Evaluation Center at John Jay College of Criminal Justice.
Jeffrey Butts was interviewed by NBC News for a story about community-based violence prevention efforts in New York City.
Cure Violence programs in New York City have become a staple during the de Blasio administration over the years, receiving $34 million in allocations while expanding into 17 precincts in high-crime neighborhoods. A study by John Jay College of Criminal Justice in 2020 found that the drop in shootings over the years coincided with increased use of Cure Violence programs across the city.
A Brooklyn community’s experiment to deal with a longstanding crime hotspot in a busy commercial corridor took a new approach last month: They pulled back on policing. ... Jeffrey Butts, who has done extensive research on Cure-Violence initiatives, also questioned how far the experiment could go.
Center director, Jeffrey Butts, was interviewed for this story on Fox News, July 30, 2020.
[Cure Violence workers] “try to stop the cycle of retaliation, and because they are not seen as an extension of law enforcement, the people most likely to be walking around with handguns in their pocket will talk to them and will allow them to settle a dispute before it turns violent,” said Jeffrey Butts, director of the Research and Evaluation Center at City University of New York’s John Jay College of Criminal Justice.
Sheyla Delgado, deputy director for analytics at John Jay College and a researcher for the Cure Violence evaluation, says the comparisons offer promising evidence in favor of the program’s public health approach to violence reduction. She says what seems to make Cure Violence different from comparable programs that work to reduce violence is that it humanizes all of its participants.
Jeffrey Butts, Shadoe Tarver, and Jessica Mofield explain how many communities in New York City are working with Cure Violence groups to reduce shootings.
CBS2 in New York City profiles the Cure Violence programs operating throughout the city, including the fact that a 2017 JohnJayREC study found the program can work.
Cure Violence may be one of the few models that has been shown to successfully make highly violent communities a lot less violent without using the tools of arrest, force, and incarceration.
On June 10, 2020, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the $10M expansion of Cure Violence programs in police precincts in New York City with the highest amounts of gun violence.
An ongoing evaluation by John Jay College of Criminal Justice found one neighborhood experienced a 63% drop in monthly shooting victims from 2009 to 2016, based on New York Police Department data. New York spends approximately $40 million a year on Cure Violence programs. Slutkin estimates that big cities require about $15 million to $30 million to run an effective program, and small cities need $5 million to $10 million.
Take the Cure Violence program, a core part of CMS. It has proven to be effective in combating gun violence by treating shootings as a public-health issue that can be contained, just like the outbreak of a disease. According to a study from John Jay College, after Cure Violence was implemented in East New York in 2010, the neighborhood saw a 50% drop in gun injuries.
Sheyla Delgado, JohnJayREC Deputy Director for Analytics, appeared on a NY1 talk show as part of a panel discussing violent crime in New York City neighborhoods.
A John Jay College study compared a South Bronx neighborhood served by Cure Violence with a demographically similar neighborhood that did not have violence interrupters. But perhaps more promising than the decrease in shootings were the shifts in attitudes toward violence the John Jay survey found among young men in the neighborhood.
The John Jay College of Criminal Justice Research and Evaluation Center analyzed the New York City experience with the Cure Violence model in 2017, seven years after the strategy was adopted. It found reductions in gun injuries of 37–50 percent in the South Bronx and Brooklyn. The center also documented a 14 percent reduction in attitudes supporting violence, with no change in control populations. However, more research is needed.