Philadelphia—A pilot program to help youths who have been literally struck by violence has been eliminated by budget cuts. The Pennsylvania Injury Reporting and Intervention System, which began in 2006, focuses on gun violence victims, ages 15 to 24, at three hospitals. It collects information on gun violence injuries, and develops multi-system interventions for victims and perpetrators of gun violence and their families. It guides them through such systems as GED preparation, job training, family court and public assistance.
The program, budgeted at $1.3 million a year, is under the State Health Department and is run by the Public Health Management Corp., with help from the Philadelphia Anti-Drug/Anti-Violence Network.
It stopped accepting new referrals in April and will close all cases by the end of this month, according to the state Health Department. As of early April, the system had 31 active clients.