Profile No. 46

Boston Ten-Point Coalition -- Operation 2006 -- Boston, MA

Program Type or Federal Program Source:
Program to change attitudes about guns and violence.

Program Goal:
To reach out to at-risk youth and gang members; to reduce violence in the community.

Specific Groups Targeted by the Strategy:
At-risk youth, gang members.

Geographical Area Targeted by the Strategy:
Boston, MA.

Evaluated by:
Internal data collection.

Contact Information:
Mark Scott, Executive Director
National Ten-Point Leadership Foundation
411 Washington Street
Boston, MA 02124
Phone: 617­282­6704

Years of Operation:

Prior to the development of a coordinated effort to reduce gun violence in Boston, MA, a few African-American churches in the city had been working independently with at-risk youth in their neighborhoods. In 1992, when violence escalated, some church clergy and laity formed the Boston Ten-Point Coalition -- Operation 2006, which then developed a collaboration with Boston police. This collaboration was based on the belief that for every nine youngsters who could be saved from violence by the clergy or community-based organizations, there was one who could not and would be better off in the hands of the police.

In light of Boston's long history of racial tensions, this type of collaboration between the police department and the coalition was a milestone. The clergy supported selective, aggressive enforcement and helped to "deracialize" policing in the African-American community.

Clergy members of the coalition have gone into crack houses and gang-infested areas at night to reclaim youth. Under the Adopt-a-Gang program, city churches have agreed to keep their doors open and serve as drop-in centers to provide sanctuary for troubled youth. The Boston Ten-Point Coalition -- Operation 2006 participated in Boston's Operation Ceasefire neighborhood forums (see profile 21), at which youth were given zero tolerance messages and offered services. The Coalition also is linked to Boston's strategy to prevent youth violence (see profile 2).

The Boston Ten-Point Coalition Operation 2006 launched the National Ten-Point Coalition to develop similar programs in other cities, including Chester, PA; Gary, IN; Los Angeles, CA; Louisville, KY; Plainfield, NJ; and Tampa, FL.

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Promising Strategies to Reduce Gun Violence OJJDP Report