City of Long Beach
Public Information Office
411 W. Ocean Blvd,
Long Beach, CA 90802
Yesterday, the City of Long Beach hosted a special reunion between Tiffany Hall, a Long Beach resident who previously struggled with addiction and incarceration, and veteran Long Beach Police Lieutenant, Jim Foster, whom she credits with helping her get her life back on track. The two had not seen each other in over five years. Lieutenant Foster often had to arrest her for various low-level offenses; however, he also took it upon himself to get her connected with the proper resources. Tiffany says his extra actions back then helped her achieve the dramatic transformation. She is off drugs, off the streets, and attending college. The reunion allowed Tiffany to thank him in person for what he did for her. A video from the event is available at: https://bit.ly/2HaLJ1Y.
“This story is just one example of how our officers help our residents and connect them to resources they need,” said Mayor Robert Garcia. “I’m proud that our innovation team implemented new techniques to improve services so that more people can turn their lives around, like Tiffany.”
In June 2017, the City of Long Beach’s Innovation Team (i-team) interviewed Tiffany, along with dozens of residents who frequently interacted with the justice system, in an effort to cut recidivism. The i-team (http://longbeach.gov/iteam/), supported by a $3 million grant from Bloomberg Philanthropies, analyzed more than 100,000 offenses over five years to look at the interactions between residents and City Police, Fire, Health, Prosecutors, and other public safety departments. The analysis found 85 percent of repeat offenses are low-level misdemeanors, like Tiffany’s, rather than serious crimes.
The i-team helped develop the City’s new Justice Lab, which is believed to be the first of its kind in the U.S. It uses a data-driven and human-centered approach to develop a series of initiatives to help lower crime and divert residents in need out of the criminal justice system and toward much needed resources to get their lives back on track. More information about the Justice Lab is available here.
“Through the Long Beach Justice Lab, first responders like police officers and firefighters now have tools to help people break the cycle of incarceration,” said Tracy Colunga, i-team Director. “My hope is that this is the first of many positive stories we will see.”
At the reunion, Tiffany ended her remarks with a surprise invitation to Lieutenant Foster to attend her graduation from California State University, Dominquez Hills that will take place this May. The Lieutenant, unaware that Tiffany was even attending college, accepted the invitation exclaiming, “I wouldn’t miss it for the world.
About Long Beach Innovation Team (i-team)
Now working in more than 20 cities across four countries, the Innovation Teams Program helps cities solve problems in new ways to deliver better results for residents. Bloomberg Philanthropies awards cities multi-year grants to create in-house innovation teams, or “i-teams,” which offer cities a different set of tools and techniques to innovate more effectively and tackle critical challenges—from reducing violent crime to revitalizing neighborhoods to strengthening the growth of small businesses.
Launched in 2015 by Mayor Robert Garcia, Long Beach’s i-team works closely and supportively with their colleagues across city government. The i-team is currently working on its Public Safety priority following its work on Economic Development, which produced initiatives like BizPort, an online business portal providing resources for entrepreneurs. The i-team’s work on the Economic Development Blueprint continues to drive continues to drive investment by the City strengthening Long Beach’s economy.
About the City of Long Beach
Home to approximately 470,000 people, the multiple award-winning and innovative City of Long Beach offers all the world-class amenities of a large metropolitan city while maintaining a strong sense of individual and diverse neighborhoods nestled together along the California coast. Long Beach is home to the Queen Mary, Aquarium of the Pacific, several museums and theaters, a highly-rated school district, Long Beach Airport, the Port of Long Beach, as well as many award-winning City departments such as Health, Parks, Recreation and Marine, Development Services and more. The City also has a highly-respected university and city college, two historic ranchos, five hospitals, five golf courses, 171 parks, miles of beaches, marinas, bike paths, and a Bike Share programFor more information about the City of Long Beach, visit http://longbeach.gov/. Follow us on social to keep up with the latest news: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.