The increasing gang violence and gang related crime in the past few years have painted an
intimidating representation, reminder and reality of Toronto. What are some solutions to reduce,
if not eliminate, gangs, organized crime and gang violence in Toronto? After two of the most
violent gang raids in Toronto, the Eaton Centre shooting and the Scarborough street party
shooting, Prime Minister Stephen Harper responded that the solution is to enforce greater
criminal law to restrict gang violence and gun crimes. However, will laws really stop gang
violence? Laws against crimes have always existed and if such gang members were concerned
about laws, it would have stopped them from gang movement and violence in the first place.
Other solutions include gang education for youth, support and evolvement with family and the
community, and police watch. Although such interventions are important, they are generic and
have been facilitated for the past decade.
My solution is a program offered for past gang members and individuals of priority
neighbourhoods who may meet potential association with gangs. In this program, members are
asked to create a solution/proposal to reduce gang violence; given the education on the culture
of gangs and gang movement in Toronto. Those in the program with creative, valuable and
feasible solutions will be hired to be part of a new department in affiliation with the police as a
paid position. Although in affiliation with the police, individuals are not to feel reluctant to join as
the program is facilitated by other professionals and advisors. As hired individuals of the new
department, they will sustain their projects; given the tools they require, including a budget
which they must develop a proposal and be approved for.
However, why will this work? Social psychology explains that individuals join gangs to seek
association to greater power, support, protection, authority and financial support within a larger
group. Unfortunately, gangs often exhibit such power and social conformity negatively through
gang violence and crime.
My program targets on the rehabilitation of these individuals. First, members