The Office of Justice Programs’ Bureau of Justice Assistance today awarded grants totaling $5.7 million to create safer neighborhoods through a sustained reduction in gang violence and gun crime. The awards are funded under the 2016 Violent Gang and Gun Crime Reduction (Project Safe Neighborhoods) Program. The goal of PSN is to create safer neighborhoods through a sustained reduction in gang violence and gun crime.
The program's effectiveness is based on a cooperative approach and unified strategies led by the local U.S. Attorney, a collaborative PSN task force of federal, state, and local law enforcement, community members, and other key partners. The partners work to implement gang crime and gun violence enforcement, intervention, and prevention initiatives, using data and research with a local research partner.
"Gang violence and gun crime are two of the most formidable obstacles we face in ensuring that every American lives in safe and secure communities," said Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch. "These vital grants give jurisdictions the resources they need to develop comprehensive, collaborative responses to the most serious and destructive crimes. By combining more effective enforcement with closer cooperation, better data and expanded prevention initiatives, Project Safe Neighborhoods helps communities make meaningful strides towards ending violence, promoting peace, and restoring hope."
“Although crime rates remain at historically low levels nationally, some communities – and particularly, certain segments of those communities – continue to struggle with gun crimes and gang violence,” said Assistant Attorney General Karol V. Mason. “The funding provided through Project Safe Neighborhoods gives these jurisdictions the resources they need to improve outreach and education, prosecute gun and gang cases, and restore peace to their streets and homes.”
This year’s recipients of approximately $500,000 each include Black Family Development, Inc. of Michigan; the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services; the Denver Police Department; City of Brookhaven, Georgia; the Governor’s Office of Crime Control Prevention in Maryland; the Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services; and Texas’ Safe City Commission. Awards of approximately $300,000 went to the City of Greensboro, North Carolina; The Justice Education Center, Inc. of Connecticut; the Wisconsin Department of Justice; City of Columbia, South Carolina; and the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute (two awards). The City of Memphis, Tennessee, the City of Omaha, Nebraska and Louisiana State University each received awards of $150,000.
Each applicant addressed the required PSN design features in its application: (1) Partnerships; (2) Strategic Planning, Crime Analysis, and Research Integration; (3) Training; (4) Outreach; and (5) Accountability and Data-Driven efforts.
The Office of Justice Programs (OJP), headed by Assistant Attorney General Karol V. Mason, provides federal leadership in developing the nation’s capacity to prevent and control crime, administer justice, and assist victims. OJP has six bureaus and offices: the Bureau of Justice Assistance; the Bureau of Justice Statistics; the National Institute of Justice; the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; the Office for Victims of Crime, and the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking (SMART). More information about OJP and its components can be found at www.ojp.gov.