September | October 2017

Message From the Acting Administrator: OJJDP's Anti-Gang Resources

Hello, I’m Eileen Garry, Acting Administrator of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

At a recent law enforcement conference titled, "Gangs Across the Carolinas," Attorney General Jeff Sessions stated categorically that combating gang-related violence is a top priority for the White House and for the Justice Department.

We at OJJDP understand how destructive gangs are to our youth, families, and communities; our commitment to combating this problem spans three decades. In 1987, we launched OJJDP’s Comprehensive Gang Model, a multidisciplinary approach proven to be effective in reducing gang activity. The model has evolved over the years and it now incorporates the following five essential strategies—

  • Mobilizing the community to coordinate programs and people.
  • Developing employment, educational, and vocational opportunities for youth.
  • Social intervention by schools, youth-serving agencies, and outreach workers to connect gang-involved youth and their families to needed services.
  • Monitoring and suppressing violent activity.
  • Implementing policies and procedures that result in the most effective use of resources and sharing of information across organizations and agencies.

Widespread adoption of the Comprehensive Gang Model over the years is a testament to the model’s value and suitability for replication. Several cities—including Denver, Charlotte, Syracuse, Memphis, and Newport News—have adopted the model. And Massachusetts, North Carolina, and Washington have implemented the model at the state level. In 2014 and 2016, we provided funding—through our Comprehensive Anti-Gang Strategies and Programs grant—to implement the model in 10 additional sites in California, Colorado, Florida, Massachusetts, New Jersey, North Carolina, Oregon, and Washington.

Another component of our anti-gang work is the National Gang Center, a project we fund jointly with the Bureau of Justice Assistance. The center provides training, technical assistance, and a range of resources for policymakers, practitioners, researchers, and the public. I encourage you to visit the center’s redesigned website at

On the site, you will find new focus areas on criminal justice, communities, and research; an inquiries section for quicker responses from staff; and forms to request technical assistance, consultations, and training. While on the site, take a moment to read the National Gang Center blog and review new Comprehensive Gang Model tools. These tools have been specifically designed to help communities with their gang prevention, intervention, and suppression efforts.

Finally, OJJDP’s Model Programs Guide and the Publications page of our website offer a wealth of guidance on effective strategies for combating gang activity. The publication, A Law Enforcement Official's Guide to the OJJDP Comprehensive Gang Model can be downloaded at no cost from

These are only a few examples of the work we do every day at OJJDP to end violence in our communities and to protect our youth from gang involvement. For more information on our anti-gang activities or to apply for funding, please visit our website at

Thank you.