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Baltimore to host summit on youth violence featuring more than 30 cities

Baltimore will host more than 600 participants from more than 30 cities this week for the Fifth National Summit on Preventing Youth Violence.

Along with representatives from cities nationwide, several national figures will attend, including U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, Secretary of Education John King and Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez.

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Theron Pride, chief of staff for the Department of Justice's Office of Justice Programs, said the city made a good hosting site because of its active involvement with the program and proximity to Washington.

"In previous years we've held the Summit in D.C. or the surrounding area," Pride said. "Baltimore is a perfect pick because it is a welcoming host city and committed to efforts to reduce youth violence."

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The National Forum on Youth Violence Prevention, an initiative President Barack Obama started in 2010, will run the convention along with the My Brother's Keeper Task Force, another Obama administration program.

The National Forum strives for local communities and federal agencies to work together to prevent and reduce youth violence.

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, who will return Tuesday afternoon from the U.S. Conference of Mayors meeting in Indianapolis, was not on the list of attendees, said Sheila Jerusalem, a Department of Justice spokeswoman. Rawlings-Blake will deliver a video message Wednesday to the summit, according to a draft of the agenda.

Dozens of other Baltimore representatives will be on hand, including pastors, police officials, professors, public defenders and city officials. City organizations including Park Heights Renaissance, Safe Streets, Banner Neighborhoods, Strong City Baltimore and others will be in attendance as well, Jerusalem said.

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Several police, health and city officials, including Neal Janey, director of public safety, and Merrick Moses, community liaison for the state's attorney office, are on the attendee list.

The Hilton Baltimore will host the convention, which is scheduled to run Monday through Wednesday.

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