A professor from the University of Chicago spoke at the University of Pittsburgh to a crowd of approximately 100 about gang violence prevention. Social Work Professor Irving Spergel specifically talked about his approach to remedy gangs, called “The Spergel Model. It’s a collaborative effort between police, schools and community groups.
“One has to go out into the community to reach these kids who are sort of alienated, on their own, and help them make connections with the rest of society,” Spergel says.
For instance, instead of schools suspending kids from the inside, they should be punished with in-school suspensions.
Spergel says Pittsburgh is no exception to having gangs. His plan is being tested in 40 American cities, and has yielded dramatic results. In Chicago, adding the program resulted in a 40 percent decrease in violent crimes among young people.