Birmingham mayor targeting public safety among the youth with latest budget

Published: May. 18, 2022 at 8:29 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin’s newest budget proposal has yet to be approved by the city council, but a big factor in the new budget will be public safety, in particular among the youth.

Several new programs or services would fall under the Division of Youth Services.

These include programs or efforts centered around conflict resolution, financial literacy, early childhood development and juvenile reentry. Still, those efforts and programs, while a piece of the mayor’s proposed budget have yet to be approved by the city council. Which is why the Division of Youth Services is unable to comment on them at this time.

Still, one program that the mayor is pushing funding towards has existed for decades. The Summer Jobs Program, where WBRC FOX 6 is a partner, has given kids between 14 and 24 opportunities in the workforce.

“It does provide a unique opportunity for young people to gain the experience. Many of them going to work for the very first time going to work. Learning how to clock in and report to a supervisor, but at the time it gives them essential skills that is necessary. It gives them the income, mentoring relationships for young people beginning at 14 years of age,” said Division of Youth Services Executive Director Galvin Billups.

The deadline to apply for the program is the end of this week. Billups stressed that the focus of the division is to improve children’s lives by giving them access to the tools they need to succeed and allow them ways to find positive outlets.

The city council is expected to consider the proposal that would push more funding to the Division of Youth Services. Traditionally, a decision is made by June.


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