Several majority black High Schools in Cincinnati, Ohio are already paying students to show up to class. It started with 99% black Dohn Community High School during the 2011-2012 school year. They began paying students between $15-$30 per week for not skipping school. Part of the money they get right away, and part of the money is put in an account that they can’t access until they graduate. It has since spread to other majority black schools in Cincinnati.
Around the same time, Virginia Beach started offering cash rewards for passing advanced placement tests. They started the program with two majority non-white High Schools.
However, Richmond, California took things to a dramatic new level in 2014. They began paying young gang members $1,000 a month not to commit crimes. They also hired ex-cons to act as “mentors,” putting both young criminals and older seasoned criminals on the city payroll. The program is called Operation Peacemaker. Richmond, CA is less than a fifth white.
Now, Sacramento is following suit. The Sacramento City Council voted 9-0 to pay gang members not to commit crimes. They are calling the program Advance Peace. Gang members will get a cash stipend if they stay in school and do not get caught committing a serious crime. The city has already committed to spending $375k per year for the first four years. Another $375k per year is allegedly coming from private sources.
Critics say the program will create an incentive to join gangs to become eligible for the program. Others say the money should instead be used for rewards, which undermines the “no snitch” culture in the black community. Sacramento is about a third white.
Stockton, California, which is only about a fifth white, is expected to vote on a similar program soon.