207350 CeaseFire Chicago: An analysis of the effects of a funding interruption on the CeaseFire intervention

Monday, November 9, 2009: 11:15 AM

Charlie Ransford, MPA , Chicago Project for Violence Prevention, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Candice Kane, PhD, JD , The Chicago Project for Violence Prevention, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Gary Slutkin, MD , University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
CeaseFire is a public health intervention designed to reduce shootings and killings through outreach, mediation, public education, and community collaboration. In September 2007, CeaseFire lost most of its state funding and had to withdraw from most of its Chicago communities. This paper looks at the effects of removing the CeaseFire intervention on shootings in Chicago.

The CeaseFire intervention has shown large, statistically significant reductions in shootings, including an average first year reduction in shootings of 42%. An independent evaluation funded by the National Institute of Justice confirmed these results finding statistically significant results in all seven communities analyzed.

After the loss of funding, CeaseFire went from employing 66 outreach workers and 35 violence interrupters down to 4 outreach workers and 12 interrupters; from working with 588 clients in 18 communities down to no clients in only one community. This paper will examine shooting and homicide data in Chicago from 1999 through 2008 to determine the effects of removing CeaseFire.

Initial analysis has shown that since CeaseFire withdrew from the communities, shootings increased in 14 out of 16 months for a total of 478 more shootings. Previous to the interruption, shootings increased in only 2 of 8 months for an overall reduction of 155 shootings. A geographic analysis has shown that these increases happened in areas that formerly had an active CeaseFire intervention, while areas that maintained a program had reductions. These findings, although not desired, add further evidence to the effectiveness of the Chicago CeaseFire model.

Learning Objectives:
1) To connect police data with program data in analyzing a public health intervention 2) To analyze the effects of removing a successful public health intervention

Keywords: Youth Violence, Violence Prevention

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: primary researcher and author of paper. Work on violence prevention and crime for the past 5 years.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.