MINNEAPOLIS — With violent crime out of control in Minneapolis, Mayor Jacob Frey believes he has the answer. Twenty men—presumed to be “trusted” by those in their neighborhoods—will hit the streets in June and start asking around about where the guns are.
In an attempt to decrease gun violence, Mayor Frey has pledged a million dollars to what is being called the Community Safety Specialist (CSS) program. Each man will be paid $15.30 an hour and according to Fox 9, they could eventually earn $23 an hour.
Gayle Smaller, the Northside Residents Redevelopment Council (NRRC) Safety Committee Chair, said that “…credible guys from the neighborhood allows those thugs to trust us.”
It appears that Minneapolis city leaders believe that thugs and gangbangers will surrender their (illegal) guns because “credible guys from the neighborhood” are asking them to do so.
The “credible guys” will receive 180 hours of training, which includes de-escalation, hands-on tactical skills, anti-terrorism, and mental health first aid. This resembles police training, but with much less instruction.
The CSS program is not part of the police department.
And it is being called a brand new profession geared towards community safety. “We have created our own profession, strictly geared towards community safety and the CSS program,” said Frank McCrary, a SEUI Local 26 executive board member, who explained the CSS program to news channel Fox 9.
The new positions are listed as a “skilled trade” with the city.