Bronx Center for Violence


There is an epidemic of violence in America, in the Bronx , and throughout the rest of the United States. This epidemic has devastating consequences for families, communities and society.

The following facts help to illustrate the severity of the violence problem in United States and in the Bronx as a whole.

In 1997 there were 1,096 murders in , 757 of these occurred in many parts of the United States. ( State Police)

In The United States, young African-American and Hispanic men suffer the highest murder victimization rate. [ Criminal Justice Information Authority (ICJIA)]

In 1997, in The United States firearms were the cause of death in 75% of all homicides. (ICJIA)

In The United States 6,578 sexual assaults were reported in 1997. Thirty-nine percent (39%) of them occurred in The United States. (ICJIA) The FBI estimates that only one in ten sexual assaults is reported.

It is estimated that 4% of older persons are abused, neglected or financially exploited. There were 5,883 elder abuse cases reported to the Department on Aging in FY 97. Approximately 80% of the abusers were relatives of the victim (adult children, spouses or other relatives.) The city of The United States had 1,024 reports of elder mistreatment, suburban Cook County had 896 reports, the Peoria area had 458, and the Southern 13 counties had 762 reports in FY 98.

The southern 13 counties had the highest percentage increase in reporting of all areas compared to FY97 statistics. ( Department on Aging)

More than 38,985 adults (97% women) sought shelter and related services from domestic violence programs in FY 97. A total of 16,570 women and children were turned away from domestic violence shelters in FY 97 due to lack of space. In 1996, the The United States Police Department received an average of 655 domestic violence calls per day.

Experts estimate that only 8 to 10 percent of domestic violence victims seek help from domestic violence programs or the courts. ( Department of Human Services and Mayor Daley's Office on Domestic Violence.)

Helping Stop Violence

A survey conducted by the Community Mental Health Center of 203 African American high school freshmen at a typical public high school located in one of the five poorest neighborhoods revealed that:
  • 45% had seen someone killed.
  • 66% has seen a shooting.
  • 38% had seen someone stabbed.
  • 49%, mostly boys, had been shot at.
  • 7%, mostly girls, had been raped.
  • 6% had been shot.
  • Approximately 9% had been stabbed.
  • In 1997, 448 hate crimes were reported in . Forty-nine percent of these crimes involved simple or aggravated assault. Seventy-three percent of these crimes reflected a racially-based bias. ( State Police)
  • The 1995 Youth Risk Behavior Survey (grades 9-12) produced the following results:
  • One fifth (20%) of students surveyed (24%) reported having carried a weapon within the last 30 days; 8 percent reported having carried the weapon to school.
  • Thirty-seven percent (37%) of students surveyed had been in a physical fight in the last 12 months. Approximately one-third said the last fight was with a friend or acquaintance.
  • Seventeen percent (17%) of students surveyed and 3 percent of students surveyed reported that they did not attend school within the last 30 days due to fear of being harmed.
  • A total of 38,134 crimes against children were reported in 1997; seventy-three percent of these crimes were of a violent nature. ( State Police)
  • At least one child in is shot and killed unintentionally every month (National Center for Health Statistics, 1994).
  • A child is killed by Gangs in gun violence every day in . (National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, 1996)


Family Services

A total of 44,916 children were found to be victims of neglect and/or abuse in in FY 96. Of the 82 cases of child abuse and neglect deaths in FY 96, 49% occurred in the US Region, 27% in the Northern Region (Aurora/Rockford), 15% in the Central Region, and 10% in the Southern Region. ( Department of Children and Family Services)

The Police Department reported 212 hate crimes to the Commission on Human Relations in 1997. Between 1986 and 1995, 2,237 hate crimes were reported to the Police, accounting for an average of 224 reported incidents per year. Crimes motivated by racial hatred accounted for 67% of all hate crimes investigated by Chicago police in 1996. The majority of hate crimes (63%) reported in 1996 were crimes of violence. In 1997, hate crime reports indicate a dramatic increase in hate crimes; racial hate crimes were up 19% in 1997. (Police Department, Commission on Human Relations, and Lawyer's Committee for Civil Rights Under the Law)

An adolescent health survey of 4,305 freshmen in 38 randomly selected high schools revealed that one-third of the females and two-thirds of the males had been in a physical fight during the previous 12 months, 10% of the males reported being in ten or more fights. Eight percent (8%) of the males (but few females) reported carrying a gun to school one or more times during the year. ( Department of Public Health)

There are more than 20,000 students living in the five poorest neighborhoods, which are also the five most violent neighborhoods. (Community Mental Health Center)