Gov. Wolf, Lawmakers discuss grant opportunity for violence intervention and prevention

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PHILADELPHIA – On Thursday, Governor Tom Wolf joined state lawmakers to remind communities and organizations that $24 million in state funding is available to address community violence.  

“We cannot overstate how painful and damaging gun violence is to our communities,” Gov. Wolf said. “The fear, stress and grief gun violence leaves in its wake hurts every member of our communities. This funding will provide communities and organizations with resources to implement or support programs that are tackling community violence. I’m grateful to those who are taking steps every day to keep their communities safe and I urge them to apply for this opportunity.” 

The Violence Intervention and Prevention (VIP) funding was administered by the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD), intended to support local intervention and prevention measures to stop gun and group violence in regions that are experiencing high rates of violent crime.  

“Stemming the violence in our neighborhoods requires coordination and determination at every level, but most importantly in our neighborhoods,” said state Senator Vincent Hughes. “By focusing at ground level, funding will be able to hit the streets quickly and reach people one by one. Our caucus has helped make these resources available and I encourage community organizations and on-the-ground leaders to apply for these funds.” 

Community-based organizations, institutions of higher education, municipalities, district attorneys and counties are all eligible to apply. Awards will range from maximum budgets of $50,000 to $2,000,000 for project periods spanning up to two years.

Awards will be tiered based on the applicant’s size and service area. More detailed information about the application process can be found in the Violence Prevention and Intervention (VIP) Funding Announcement HERE. The deadline to apply is Oct. 15. 

“Gun violence has been labeled a public health crisis, some would say a public health emergency, and as such we need to coordinate resources and treat it as such,” said state Representative Donna Bullock. “Last week, there was an afterschool shooting just mere steps from my 10 year-old son’s school, and an early morning shooting in the school yard of the elementary school near my home. As a member of the Governor’s School Safety and Security Committee, I am committed to getting state resources out to those on the frontlines of this public health crisis quickly and efficiently.”

In 2019, Governor Wolf signed an Executive Order creating the Office of Gun Violence Prevention and a Special Council on Gun Violence within the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency, as well as the Division of Violence Prevention within the Pennsylvania Department of Health. 

In June, the governor signed the 2021-22 state budget, which included an additional $30 million for VIP grants.

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