Contra Costa Health (CCH) has been awarded a $1.5 million U.S. Department of Justice grant to support a countywide effort to develop public health strategies for reducing community violence.
The funding from the DOJ’s Office of Justice Programs Community Violence Intervention and Prevention Initiative (CVIPI) will particularly support efforts in the eastern and western regions of the county. It’s part of the $100 million in awards announced by the DOJ next month to support community violence intervention efforts across the U.S.
Attorney General Merrick B. Garland called the grants “an important part of our strategy to leverage the full force of the Department – including all 94 U.S. Attorney’s offices, our law enforcement agencies, and grant-making components – to combat violent crime and keep communities safe.”
As part of the effort, a team including stakeholders will assess the causes of violent crime in Contra Costa County communities, then work with partners including cities, law enforcement and community-based organizations to develop a strategic plan to reduce violence.
The multi-year plan will focus on “developing social-emotional learning programs for at-risk youth, building workforce development opportunities and career paths, and working with communities to improve the physical environment, neighborhood appearance and community engagement,” according to the County.
CCH will partner with the nonprofit National Institute for Criminal Justice Reform (NICJR) during the first year of the grant for research and planning assistance.
“Contra Costa Health has been working to prevent community violence since 1983,” said Supervisor Karen Mitchoff, chair of the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors. “This grant will inform the strategic vision of the Violence Prevention Program going forward. On behalf of Contra Costa County, I thank the Department of Justice for this investment in decreasing violence-related injury, increasing perceptions of safety, and building strong partnerships and relationships within the community.”