LAPD/Community Safety Partnership Bureau
Lieutenant Mike Bland
Los Angeles Job Corps Center
In June of 2021, Michelle Matthews, Los Angeles Job Corps Center (LAJCC) Business and Community Liaison, developed a strong community partner with the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD)/Community Safety Partnership Bureau in record time. Matthews reached out to LAPD leadership and shared all the great resources offered through Job Corps in support of community health and wellness, especially for those considered most vulnerable, isolated, and underserved.
Matthews and Lt. Mike Bland of the LAPD/CSPB attended a community meeting at the Pueblo Del Rio Housing Development which included police officers, community members, and gang interventionists. After Matthews shared the mission of Job Corps, energy and excitement brewed.
“It is truly a match made in heaven,” said Lt. Bland. “The LAPD Community Safety Partnership Bureau (CSPB) prides itself on developing partnerships with entities such as Job Corps to provide opportunity and hope for our community members living in our housing developments throughout the City (and two South Los Angeles Park communities), to enhance our crime reduction goals and reduce victimization.”
The LAPD/CSPB has benefited greatly from the Job Corps partnership. Job Corps provides resources during events, and the community recognizes that police officers have a heart and compassion for people and are trying their best to help in reversing the conditions that exist in some of our most underserved communities. Job Corps has also signed up a few young people from surrounding neighborhoods, thus, changing the trajectory of young people’s lives and preventing them from being victimized or victimizing others through crime, gang membership, or substance abuse. This partnership gives young people a sense of purpose.
“If you take the gun out of someone’s hand, you better put something else in it,” said Lt. Bland. Job Corps can be that “something else.” According to LAPD/CSPB, effective public safety requires partnerships, and Job Corps is about action and substance, not optics.