SAN ANTONIO, TX
YOUTH AGAINST CRIME
1. Briefly describe the structure of your program.
The San Antonio Police Department has various programs which emphasize the prevention of violence in schools. This is achieved through education, awareness, and involvement with the youths. One of the programs is called "Youth Against Crime" (Y.A.C.). The Y.A.C. program was established as a way to give good kids something positive to do to improve their neighborhoods. In addition to knowing how to recognize and report crimes, how to work with the police, and how to work with the Cellular On Patrol (C.O.P.) patrols, Y.A.C. members will organize and become involved in community projects, such as graffiti prevention, working with elderly residents, and neighborhood clean-ups. Y.A.C. classes are held at the various police substations and are taught by police officers. Classes are four hours long, and are generally held on Saturdays. Y.A.C. class topics include:
I. Introduction to Y.A.C.
a. Rules and Procedures
II. The Dangers of Drugs
a. What are drugs?
b. Why do youths use drugs?
c. Drug Prevention and Treatment .
III. Types of Crimes
a. What are crimes
IV. Communicating with the Police
a. What are gangs?
b. Why do youths avoid gangs?
c. How to avoid or get out of gangs?
VI. Community Service
a. What is Community Service?
b. Some projects and activities .
VII. Closing Remarks and Graduation
The San Antonio Police Department has various other programs such as the Police Athletic League (P.A.L.), Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.), and Gang Resistance Education and Training (G.R.E.A.T.). None of the programs specifically focus on the issue of violence in schools, however, they do address the issue of violence, as well as drug usage and gang involvement, which can contribute to violence.
2. When was the program created and why?
a. The Y.A.C. program was established this year, 1998. The Y.A.C. program was implemented as a way to give good kids something to do to improve their neighborhoods.
b. The Police Athletic League was formed in 1991. It was created as an effort to involve youths in various competitive sports as an alternative to becoming involved in gangs or other forms of ill behavior. To date, the program has involved over 7,000 youths.
c. The San Antonio Police Departmentís D.A.R.E. program started in 1985, and the G.R.E.A.T. program began in 1995. Both the D.A.R.E. program and the G.R.E.A.T. program predominantly provide instruction in school for children in the seventh grade.
3. How do you measure the programís effectiveness?
Essentially, the effectiveness of the programs are based upon the number of participants and the support received for the programs.
4. How is the program financed?
a. The Y.A.C. program is financed strictly through general funding. It will also conduct fund-raisers.
b. P.A.L. is financed by outside sources.
c. D.A.R.E. and G.R.E.A.T. are financed through general funding. They both started as grant funded and they evolved to the general funding.
5. How is the community involved in the program, if at all. How has the community responded to the program?
With the P.A.L program and the Y.A.C. program, they both are programs that are based upon voluntary participation. The community involvement in these programs is best reflected by the number of youths who become involved and the number of parents who become a part of the programs in support of their children. In addition, with programs such as Y.A.C., the youths actually become involved with the community by assisting in neighborhood clean-ups, graffiti paint-outs, visiting elderly, etc.
The D.A.R.E. and G.R.E.A.T. programs are part of the schools curriculum and both are very recognized and encouraged by the community as an educational need for the youths.
6. Contact person:
For more information on the Y.A.C. program, please contact:
Officer Erik Doyle, San Antonio Police Department
Central Substation-S.A.F.F.E. Unit
515 South Frio Street
San Antonio, Texas 78205
For more information on the P.A.L., D.A.R.E., and G.R.E.A.T. programs, please contact:
The United States Conference of Mayors
J. Thomas Cochran, Executive Director
Copyright © 1999, US Conference of Mayors, All rights reserved.