The identification of a fundamental problem guides the Safe and Sound Campaign’s strategies. We believe that the problems that typically characterize Baltimore City (crime, drugs, drop-outs, unwanted pregnancies, etc.) are actually consequences of a fundamental systemic flaw. Our single problem is the unequal access to the basic opportunities for healthy and successful development. A legacy of our past, our current situation is not of our own making, but exists and is sustained by structural racism. It is however, ours to change.
The goals of the campaign are clear and simple. We need to make sure that in Baltimore:
Because of the Public Safety Compact (PSC), 81,699 days of incarceration were averted between July 1, 2014 and June 30, 2015. That’s equal to more than 223 years of peoples’ lives safely and productively spent in the community.
The Public Safety Compact: Reducing the number of people incarcerated + Reducing the rate of recidivism = Saving the State Money.
The Public Safety Compact is an initiative of The Maryland Opportunity Compact, a private/public financing tool that redirects funding from ineffective, high cost programs (such as foster care, juvenile confinement, and - most relevant here - prisons,) to alternative interventions that produce better results for less public funding.
Designed to safely release eligible inmates years earlier than otherwise possible, the Public Safety Compact encompasses a proven suite of interventions including behind-the-fence drug treatment and, upon release, enrollment in appropriate treatment within 48 hours, leading to a comprehensive recovery program including cognitive, educational, and employment services guided by a full-time case worker. The Public Safety Compact helps participants get clean and stay clean, sober, and connected to jobs, volunteer, and civic leadership opportunities.
The Public Safety Compact frees millions of tax dollars that can then be reallocated to provide effective services and opportunities to help communities prosper in Maryland.
Critical to the implementation of a Maryland Opportunity Compact is a formal agreement (or contract,) between operating partners that outlines roles and responsibilities, includes cost and savings estimates, and which commits partners to sustaining the effort and re-investing savings. The savings that are generated are shared between the state and compact operator(s), who reinvest the funds to expand these programs and grow opportunities in Maryland’s most vulnerable communities.