Summer Night Lights Training

Summer brings long days, warm nights, and unfortunately, seasonal spikes in crime. UPI has been busy these past two months, proactively working to ensure the summer is peaceful for all families.

Read More
FernandoComment
Urban Peace Academy Graduation

Recently, 25 brave peacemakers graduated from our Urban Peace Academy with the complex skills needed to reduce violence in Los Angeles’ most violent communities. Each participant completed 140-hours of intense coursework focusing on effective strategies for forming trust with both residents and officers to ensure neighborhood safety.

Read More
FernandoComment
Latino Leadership Institute Celebration

Earlier this summer, alumni of UPI’s Latino Leadership Institute gathered to celebrate their accomplishments in creating a safe and healthy community. This community event provided an opportunity for over 40 Latino Leadership Institute alumni to reconnect and share their experiences with the whole family.

Read More
FernandoComment
Urban Peace Institute Featured on PBS

PBS SoCal featured the Urban Peace Institute's continuing work to break the cycle of violence throughout Los Angeles. This story highlights our innovative Urban Peace Academy, which trains former gang members and community leaders to promote peace.

Read More
FernandoComment
Orange County Gang Injunctions Withdrawn

The Orange County District Attorney (OCDA) withdrew its attempt to impose gang injunctions on two communities in the city of Placentia. After more than two years, the OCDA has been unable to prove that any of the 50 people they alleged were gang members were actually active gang members. As a result, the injunctions never became enforceable. Any reduction in crime in Placentia can only be attributed to other causes.

Read More
FernandoComment
UPI Wins Successful Legal Challenge to California’s Gang Database

One year ago, UPI received an urgent call from Liz Blanchard, whose brother, Nelson Valle, was detained at the Otay Mesa Immigration Detention Facility as a result of gang allegations. Liz knew Nelson was living a peaceful life and was no longer a gang member.

Read More
FernandoComment
Breaking the Cycle: Tina’s Graduation from the Urban Peace Academy

The odds of Tina becoming a peacemaker in her neighborhood were slim. Tina’s father was an active gang member. Her mother was only a teenager when she was born.  She watched her father battle drug addictions, holidays were rarely celebrated, and her home often had no electricity. However, Tina refused to become a victim of her surroundings.

 

Read More
Life Off The Database: A Successful Appeal in Orange County

When Jose was a teenager, he admits that he made some poor choices that landed him in juvenile hall. While juvenile hall is intended to act as an early intervention, for Jose and thousands of young men of color, it can spark deepened gang involvement as a means of protection for survival in a harsh environment.  At 15, these mistakes also caused Jose to be labeled as a gang member on California’s gang database.

Read More
FernandoComment
A New Way Forward: Benjamin’s Removal from the CalGang Database

Despite his transformation, Benjamin’s life and movements continued to be tracked through California’s gang database. The CalGang database includes information on over 100,000 residents, and has labeled children as young as two years old as gang members. This information is available across law enforcement agencies and has the potential to be shared with federal immigration officials.

Read More
Fernando RejonComment
Success: Overhaul of California Gang Databases

The Urban Peace Institute (UPI) is proud to announce that Gov. Jerry Brown recently signed A.B. 90, a bill that mandates a massive overhaul to California’s shared gang database system.  For the past two years, UPI acted as a leading advocate for change to California’s gang databases, which unfairly labels over a 100,000 California residents, including children as young as two years old, as gang members.  

Read More
Fernando RejonComment
UPI Applauds Recent Arrest Reductions in Los Angeles

The Urban Peace Institute believes modern policing calls for forming authentic relationships and trust with community. We applaud the City and LAPD for recently expanding the Community Safety Partnership model to Harvard Park.

Read More
UPI team at the launch of the Community Safety Partnership in Harvard Park

The Urban Peace Institute will lead efforts to expand the Community Safety Partnership by first guiding a three-month community needs assessment effort to engage over 500 residents and stakeholders.The Urban Peace Institute will lead efforts to expand the Community Safety Partnership by first guiding a three-month community needs assessment effort to engage over 500 residents and stakeholders.

Read More
Fernando RejonComment
Connie Rice, Advisory Board Chair, Addresses The Latest Urban Peace Academy cohort

The Urban Peace Academy recently launched a new training session to promote effective violence reduction and community policing strategies. This 12-week training program is currently engaging 27 new participants in Los Angeles, who are learning proven public health approaches to improve safety in the region’s most underserved communities.

Read More
Fernando RejonComment
Life Under Gang Injunctions: Creating Pathways for Removal

The Urban Peace Institute has worked diligently to assist to residents like Arellano to appeal their inclusion on gang injunctions. “In some cases, it took two years, and this included a client who had never been arrested for anything” commented Green.

Read More
Fernando RejonComment
Reforming Los Angeles Gang Injunctions

As part of the Urban Peace Institute’s commitment to ending the mass incarceration of boys and men of color, our team partnered with the ACLU of Southern California and Youth Justice Coalition to uplift civil rights concerns through a lawsuit against the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office.

Read More
Fernando RejonComment
Getting Off the List: Life Beyond Gang Injunctions

Anthony Blockman, who grew up in Venice’s Oakwood neighborhood, is one of the few former gang members who has been successfully removed from a gang injunction with the help of the Urban Peace Institute. Despite taking a positive path in his life and working in steady construction job for over a decade, Blockman was still included in listing of active gang members.

Read More
Fernando RejonComment