This case study is part of the Reimagining Public Safety Impact Updates Resource, which highlights successful programs in cities, towns and villages across the country. View the Reimagining Public Safety Initiative to learn more about NLC’s work in creating safe, equitable communities for all. This is one of three municipalities illustrating Community Violence Intervention, in which credible community members establish relationships with individuals most impacted by violence through street outreach and violence interruption efforts.

Baton Rouge, LA (pop. 227,470): Baton Rouge Community Street Team (BRCST)

Baton Rouge Community Street Team (BRCST), launched in 2021, is one of the core four community-based violence interventions from the City of Baton Rouge. BRCST has a two-prong, concurrent strategy of 1) trained violence interrupters mediating potentially deadly conflicts, and 2) outreach workers connecting at-risk individuals to social services.

BRCST is integrated into the city’s first response, dispatched after the police have recorded an incident. When responding, high risk interventionists apply strategies to prevent retaliatory violence. By building community connections and establishing relationships, BRCST engages individuals and groups in conflict with the goal of maintaining peace between them. The goal of the BRCST is to reduce violent crime and homicide in two city ZIP codes (70802 and 70805), where a combined 17 percent of all violent crimes occurred in Baton Rouge from 2016 to 2020.  BRCST plans to expand into the 70815 ZIP code. These three areas together represent 60,000 residents across a 16-mile radius.  

BRCST has around 10 staff members including a program director, high-risk interventionists, community navigators, and a safe passage liaison. The staffing budget in 2023 was $589,126.15. Funding comes from various sources including a DOJ CVIPI grant and ARPA funds.

In 2022, BRCST led 149 dispatches responding to incidents, 12 conflict preventions, 69 interventions to prevent retaliation, 19 mediations to facilitate mutual resolve, 45 follow-ups and 42 community walks to connect with community members in high-risk neighborhoods and raise awareness of the BRCST.

Some key performance metrics collected include:

  • Number of dispatches
  • Number of preventions, interventions, and mediations
  • Number of follow-ups and community walks
  • Number of referrals out in
  • Amount of community engagement programming

Acknowledgements for contributions and review from Sateria Tate, CSM, SSM. Executive Director, A.G.I.L.E. Planning Solutions.

View the Reimagining Public Safety Impact Update

Learn more about what different cities have done to support public safety, including qualitative and quantitative measures highlighting the impact of community responder models, group violence interventions, hospital-based violence interventions and community violence interventions.