Newark officials launch program to provide safe havens for students

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Toni Yates reports on Newark's safe haven program for students.

Officials in Newark launched a program Monday to provide safe havens for the city's students as they head to and from school.

Mayor Ras Baraka and school administrators held a press conference at Malcolm X Shabazz High School gymnasium to detail the Community Safe Student Project.

It was designed to create safe havens and support safe passageways for students along the most heavily trafficked routes around the South Ward Community Schools.

Local businesses have agreed to serve as identifiable safe havens where students can seek refuge should they experience any actual or threatened violence.

"This is definitely a big improvement, because as you know, Newark is in a lot of turmoil with it being dangerous walking home," Shabazz High School student Nasir Hayes said. "A lot of kids are being struck down, being killed, so hopefully this is able to decrease that and make Newark more of a safe haven than a dangerous place and actually welcome people instead of keeping them back."

The Project is a joint effort of the Children's Cabinet Safety Subcommittee, the City of Newark, the Newark Community Street Team, the Department of Public Works, the Newark Police Division, the Newark Public Schools, NJ Transit and the Arts Education Roundtable.
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