Local Sources- The Justice Department announced today several new commitments as part of its Comprehensive Strategy for Reducing Violent Crime.
Instituted by Attorney General Merrick B. Garland in May 2021, the strategy focuses on harnessing federal resources, intelligence, and expertise as a force-multiplier with state, local, and Tribal law enforcement.
Deputy Attorney General Lisa O. Monaco and Associate Attorney General Vanita Gupta highlighted the more than $334 million in critical grant funding to law enforcement agencies and stakeholders awarded today by the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office). The COPS grants announced today include funding to help law enforcement agencies hire over 1,730 new law enforcement officers across the country while also providing critical funding to support school safety and continue to advance community policing nationwide.
They also named the five new cities to join the more than 50 jurisdictions currently part of the Office of Justice Program (OJP)’s Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) National Public Safety Partnership (PSP), which has a proven track record of helping partner sites reduce crime, improve homicide clearance rates, and enhance the quality of life for community members. The 2024 PSP sites are: Knoxville, Tennessee; Minneapolis; Raleigh, North Carolina; San Antonio; and Vallejo, California.
Lastly, the Deputy Attorney General and Associate Attorney General announced that this Dec. 11-13, in Indianapolis, the Justice Department will bring together up to 1,500 local and federal partners from across the country, including representatives from the more than 50 PSP jurisdictions and from Project Safe Neighborhoods for a Violent Crime Reduction Summit hosted by OJP BJA.
“Law enforcement officers across the country are showing up every day to protect their communities in the face of unprecedented challenges,” said Attorney General Merrick B. Garland. “These grants, which support the hiring of more than 1700 new officers and make critical investments in school safety and crisis intervention efforts, will help provide local law enforcement agencies with the resources they need to keep their communities safe, support officers, and build public trust.”
“The latest data indicates progress on declining crime rates, but the Justice Department recognizes there is far more work to do so that all Americans can be free from violence,” said Deputy Attorney General Lisa O. Monaco. “Local communities know best what works, which is why the Justice Department has recently invested over $5.6 billion in community-driven safety initiatives. The grants and partnerships announced today build on past investments and further our pledge to work hand-in-hand with law enforcement and community partners to harness our resources, intelligence, and expertise to reduce violent crime.”
“I can’t emphasize enough how critical these grants are to urban, suburban, and rural communities across the country to address urgent public safety needs and increase police-community trust and collaboration,” said Associate Attorney General Vanita Gupta. “These grants provide vital investments for communities to hire highly qualified and diverse police officers, improve school safety, and strengthen police and community partnerships.”
Since its creation in 1994, the COPS Office has advanced community policing nationwide and provided grants to over 13,000 state, local, territorial, and Tribal law enforcement agencies to fund the hiring and redeployment of approximately 138,000 officers. Funding highlights from the grants announced today include:
- Nearly $217 million to 394 agencies through the COPS Hiring Program (CHP) for the hiring of 1,730 entry-level career law enforcement officers in an effort to create and preserve jobs and increase community policing capacity and crime prevention efforts.
- More than $73.6 million to 206 school districts, state, and local governments, and other public agencies through the COPS School Violence Prevention Program (SVPP) to improve security at schools and on school grounds.
- Approximately $43.6 million to support crisis intervention teams, de-escalation training, accreditation efforts, and innovative community policing strategies through the COPS Community Policing Development (CPD) program.
Complete lists of all program award recipients, including funding amounts, can be found here.
“For almost 30 years, the COPS Office has worked to reduce crime and increase trust between law enforcement and the community through the many different grant programs that we offer,” said Director Hugh T. Clements Jr. of the COPS Office. “The funding we are announcing today will go a long way toward advancing this very important work.”
These grant awards build on the $4.4 billion that the Justice Department’s OJP has already awarded in fiscal year 2023 to support state, local and tribal public safety and community justice activities. More than $1 billion of those funds are specifically designed to reduce crime and violence, and support law enforcement. An additional $109 million supports school violence prevention and research.
“Success in reducing violent crime comes from our ability to work together, partnering with law enforcement and communities, building broad coalitions that recognize and address how to promote public safety,” said Assistant Attorney General Amy L. Solomon. “The Office of Justice Programs is proud to offer robust support to jurisdictions to address violent crime in critical ways.”
OJP provides federal leadership, grants, training, technical assistance, and other resources to improve the nation’s capacity to prevent and reduce crime; advance equity and fairness in the administration of justice; assist victims; and uphold the rule of law.