CITY OFFICIALS, SCHOOL DISTRICT ANNOUNCE FUNDING TO INSTALL AT LEAST 100 SECURITY CAMERAS NEAR SCHOOLS IMPACTED BY GUN VIOLENCE

In Council News, Curtis Jones, Jr., Darrell L. Clarke, Featured, Kenyatta Johnson, Maria D. Quiñones-Sánchez, Mark Squilla, News, Uncategorized by PHL Council

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PHILADELPHIA — City Council leaders were joined today by Mayor Jim Kenney, Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw and School District of Philadelphia officials to announce funding to install at least 100 security cameras near schools impacted by gun violence.City Council President Darrell L. Clarke (5th District) will introduce legislation this week in Council which includes $1.8 Million to fund a minimum of 100 security cameras near 15 School District schools where students have been impacted by gun violence as they travel to and from school. A list of these schools selected by the School District’s Safety office, in collaboration with the Philadelphia Police Department, is below. More schools and cameras may be added as the program is implemented.“We need every child to be safe as they go to school, and come home later in the day,” said Council President Clarke. “These cameras are a good start, and they’ll lend “eyes” to law enforcement officials working very hard to keep our kids safe from harm. I want to commend Schools Security Chief Kevin Bethel and the Philadelphia Police Department for working closely together with us to craft this cameras program.”“As we work together to address the surge in gun violence taking place across the country and in Philadelphia, an important part of that effort is to ensure that the epidemic of gun violence does not impact children or interfere with their learning, development, and wellbeing,” said Mayor Jim Kenney. “The funding announced today will provide security cameras around schools most impacted by gun violence and help ensure that schools and the surrounding areas are safe havens from violence, something every student in Philadelphia deserves.”The announcement took place Monday at John Bartram High School in Southwest Philadelphia. This January, a 12th grader at Bartram was shot near the school, shortly after dismissal. The 17 year-old later passed away from his injuries. According to city data, as of June 9, 94 Philadelphians under the age of 18 have been shot this year in Philadelphia, an 8% increase over the same time period in 2021.Clarke and the mayor were joined outside Bartram High by Council’s leadership team, including Majority Leader Cherelle L. Parker (9th District), Whip Curtis Jones, Jr. (4th District), Deputy Whip Mark Squilla (1st District), Special Committee to Prevent Gun Violence Chair Kenyatta Johnson (2nd District), and Appropriations and Education Chair Maria Quiñones Sánchez (7th District).

“We know that we live in an ever-increasing digital age, and the funding request introduced by Council President Clarke will help provide an extra level of security to some of the areas around our schools that are most challenged by the scourge of gun violence,” said Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw. “Now more than ever, we know that the presence of cameras not only act as a deterrent to those who seek to cause harm in our communities, but they also work to capture crucial evidence that is instrumental in the successful prosecution of criminal offenders.”City officials worked closely with the School District of Philadelphia to develop the list of schools, near where the cameras will be installed.“Addressing the rising gun violence in our communities will require us all to come together for our children,” said Kevin Bethel, Chief of School Security for the School District of Philadelphia. “As we’ve said all along, schools are supposed to be safe places for students, and we all have a collective responsibility to do more to ensure that our students and staff are safe as they learn and work. We all serve as the eyes and ears of our communities and this collaborative effort is one crucial step toward enhancing school safety and the areas around some of our buildings. We look forward to continuing our work with the City and Philadelphia Police Department to help stem gun violence.”Here is the current list of schools identified by the School District and PPD where the cameras will be installed:

    1. Edison/Clemente School
    2. Mastbaum High School
    3. Bartram High School
    4. South Philadelphia High School
    5. Fels High School
    6. Lincoln/Meehan/Propel
    7. Dobbins High School
    8. Ben Franklin High School
    9. Duckrey Elementary School
    10. High School of the Future
    11. Frankford High School
    12. Kensington CAPA
    13. Northeast/Wilson School
    14. Roxborough High School
    15. Harding Middle School

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