Mayor Lightfoot doubles down in battle against youth gun violence

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CHICAGO — Mayor Lori Lightfoot is doubling down on the city's fight against youth gun violence.

Lightfoot, CPS CEO Dr. Janice Jackson, interim Chicago Police Supt. Charlie Beck and other city officials sat down with students Friday morning for an intimate roundtable discussion on the issues they face in their neighborhoods.

The meeting coincided with the mayor's announcement of a multi-year investment to expand the "Choose to Change" program.

Choose to Change provides mentoring, therapy and enrichment activities to more than 2,000 students at the highest risk of gun violence in 15 high-risk communities.

Research by the University of Chicago Crime and Education Labs shows the program has not only reduced violent-crime arrests for participants by almost 50% but also increases academic engagement for participating students.

The roundtable was held at the Wendell Phillips Academy in Bronzeville.

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