Jan 9, 2012

Recreating the "miracle of Red Hook" in Brownsville, Brooklyn involves reentry programming

In a recent article published by the Brooklyn Daily Eagle, Brooklyn's District Attorney, Charles J. Hynes, declared that transforming Brownsville, Brooklyn into a safe and vibrant neighborhood must involve reentry programming.

"In Brownsville, Hynes said, re-entry, rehabilitation and education programs for young males is key to long-term crime reduction. . . Juveniles have a 78 percent recidivism rate within three years. . .The institution of juvenile detention facilities in New York. . .is an obscenity for the government. They're ticking time bombs with no reentry skills."

In 2008, Brownsville had the highest homicide rate in the city.

Hynes believes that a community justice center, like the one in Red Hook which operates in collaboration with the Center for Court Innovation, can help transform the neighborhood.  "Red Hook, formerly one of the most violent  neighborhoods in NYC, is now one of the 15 safest places in New York City," says Hynes. "If you can do it in Red Hook, you can do it anywhere."

The Center for Court Innovation and the Brooklyn DA's office are currently developing a community court in Brownsville. As part of their initial research, the Center for Court Innovation undertook a survey of residents' perceptions of Brownsville in 2010. Click here to read the survey.