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Chicago city hall asks the DOJ to help with rise in violent crime

On the evening of October 28, the Chicago Police Department reports that 19 people were shot in a 12-hour rash of violence across the city. Six of these individuals have been confirmed dead from their injuries.

While this may just appear to be a violent start to the Halloween weekend, it indicates a larger problem in our city. Despite what we may have been told in the past, the police department in Chicago is dangerously understaffed, particularly to handle the alarming increase in violent crime. City hall officials are asking the Department of Justice for help.

"The high number of unfilled sworn [police] positions, coupled with an unacceptably high rate of firearms-related violent crime in Chicago, continues to pose a significant public safety concern for our residents, the local economy and for the millions of tourists and visitors coming to Chicago each year," states the federal grant application city officials filed last July.

The DOJ awarded the city of Chicago with $3.1 million earlier this month to pay for 25 additional police officers. This is the highest amount the federal government allots for this purpose.

In addition to hiring new officers, the CPD also needs to make improvements to their training programs to be effective. Otherwise they may do more harm than good. "Each year, police officers are given eight hours of training in the use of force - and none for conflict de-escalation, racial or ethnic bias, gender bias, sexual orientation bias or engagement with the community," reports the Chicago Sun-Times.

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