Making Our Communities Safer
January, 2000

Lowest Crime Rate in 25 Years. Under the Clinton-Gore Administration, America has experienced the longest continuous drop in the crime rate on record. Violent crime rate fell 7 percent in 1998 and 27 percent since 1993. The murder rate is down more than 25 percent since 1993, its lowest point since 1967. Juvenile violent crime arrests dropped 8 percent in 1998. And the overall crime rate is the lowest in 25 years.

Putting 100,000 More Police on Our Streets. The Clinton-Gore Administration met its commitment of funding an additional 100,000 police officers for our communities, ahead of schedule and under budget. In the FY 2000 budget, the President won full funding for the first installment toward his goal to hire up to 50,000 more police officers for our nation's streets by 2005.

Giving Police the Tools They Need to Fight Crime. President Clinton won $230 million in FY00 to provide law enforcement with the latest crime-fighting and crime-solving technology. This funding will help make crime mapping technology -- which enables police agencies to track crime hot spots and target their resources to where they are most needed -- more widely available, to improve compatibility among law enforcement communications systems, and aid development and expansion of innovative tools to help law enforcement fight crime.

More than 470,000 Felons, Fugitives and Domestic Abusers Denied Guns. Since the President signed the Brady Bill into law, more than 470,000 felons, fugitives and domestic abusers have been prevented from purchasing guns through Brady background checks.

Keeping Assault Weapons Off of the Streets and Decreasing Gun Crime. The historic 1994 Crime Bill banned 19 of the deadliest assault weapons and their copies, keeping assault weapons off our streets. The homicide rate dropped 7 percent in 1998 – almost entirely due to a decrease in homicides committed with guns. Since 1993, there has been a more than 35 percent drop in gun-related crime and a 57 percent decrease in juvenile gun homicide offenders.

Largest Gun Enforcement Initiative in History. This year, President Clinton has proposed the largest gun enforcement initiative ever. The initiative would provide a record $280 million to add 500 new federal ATF agents and inspectors to target violent gun criminals and illegal gun traffickers, and fund over 1,000 new federal, state, and local prosecutors to take dangerous gun offenders off the streets. This initiative will build on the Administration's success in cracking down on serious gun criminals: the number of federal firearms cases prosecuted by the U.S. Attorneys increased 25%, from 4,754 in 1992 to 5,500 in 1999.

Working to Pass Common-Sense Gun Laws. President Clinton and Vice President Gore have called on Congress to quickly pass a common sense gun safety bill that would close the gun show loophole; require child safety locks for handguns; bar the importation of large-capacity ammunition clips; and ban violent juveniles from owning guns for life.

New Tools in the Fight Against Domestic Violence. President Clinton championed and signed into law the Violence Against Women Act, bolstering local law enforcement, prosecution, and victims’ services to better address these crimes. The President has more than quadrupled funding to domestic violence shelters and signed the Interstate Stalking Punishment and Prevention Act, making it a Federal crime to cross state lines intending to injure or harass another person. The Clinton-Gore Administration has also established a nationwide 24-hour Domestic Violence Hotline, which provides immediate crisis intervention, counseling and referrals for those in need.

Protecting Children from Sex Offenders. President Clinton signed Megan’s Law and the Jacob Wetterling Crimes Against Children and Sexually Violent Offender Registration Act, requiring states to set up sex offender registration systems and require community notification when sex offenders are released from prison.

Keeping Guns Out of Our Nation's Schools. In October 1994, President Clinton signed into law the Gun-Free Schools Act, and issued a Presidential Directive to enforce “zero tolerance” for guns in schools. Nearly 4,000 students were expelled from public schools for bringing a firearm to school in the 1997-98 school year under zero tolerance policies.

Unveiling a National Grassroots Campaign Against Youth Violence. In August 1999, President Clinton announced the formation of an independent, national campaign to address the problem of youth violence. The Campaign plans to launch anti-violence activities including a major media campaign, concerts, town hall meetings, in- and after-school programs. The Campaign will also highlight effective youth violence initiatives in cities across the country.

Making Schools Safe Places to Learn. In April 1999, following the tragic shooting at Columbine High School in Colorado, President Clinton directed the Departments of Justice and Education to distribute 150,000 additional copies of Early Warning Timely Response: A Guide to Safe Schools. The guide, created at the instruction of President Clinton, was written to help teachers, principals, parents, and others who work with young people to identify and respond to the early warning signs of troubled youth that can lead to violence in schools. The guide also helps schools develop a crisis procedure checklist if violence occurs, and lists actions students and parents can take to help make their schools safer.

Developed Comprehensive Anti-Drug Strategy Including a $195 Million National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign. President Clinton appointed four-star General McCaffrey to lead our anti-drug strategy as the nation’s Drug Czar. The President's national strategy is paying off. Illicit drug use among young people age 12-17 declined from 1997 to 1998, and the average age of first-time use went up. Overall drug use is down since its peak in the 1970's, drug-related murders have fallen by 40 percent since 1992, and youth drug use is on the decline for the third straight year.

Fighting Telemarketing Fraud. President Clinton’s Justice Department has led efforts to crack down on telemarketing fraud -- charging nearly 2,000 individuals with dishonest practices. As part of their efforts, the FBI trained and supervised senior citizens, recruited through the AARP, to help catch dishonest telemarketers. The Clinton-Gore Administration launched "Project No Fraud," a collaborative nationwide public education campaign to education consumers on how to recognize and prevent telemarketing fraud.

Fighting Hate Crimes. The President enacted the Hate Crimes Sentencing Enhancement Act in 1994. He held the historic White House Conference on Hate Crimes, where he called for passage of the Hate Crimes Prevention Act -- bipartisan legislation which would strengthen hate crimes laws and make it clear that America will not tolerate acts of violence based on race, color, gender, national origin, religion, sexual orientation or disability.

Working to End Racial Profiling. To help determine where and when racial profiling occurs, the President directed Cabinet agencies to collect data on the race, ethnicity, and gender of individuals subject to certain stops by federal law enforcement. The President has also supported increased resources for police integrity and ethics training and to improve the diversity of local police forces.


Back to the Accomplishments Page       Back to State of the Union Home Page

[White House icon] [Help Desk icon]

To comment on this service,
send feedback to the Web Development Team.