The Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD) announced this morning (Sept. 11) that it approved a grant for the city of Allentown for its Zero Youth Violence program, according to Senator Pat Browne (R-Lehigh) and Representatives Mike Schlossberg (D-Allentown) and Peter Schweyer (D-Allentown), who all led the effort in securing this funding.
The $149,836 grant will go to support the expansion of the Zero Youth Violence program, which is designed off the national Cure Violence model. The City of Allentown will collaborate with Promise Neighborhoods of the Lehigh Valley, a non-profit organization, who will serve as the recipient agency and project implementer.
“Having the ability to directly engage with young people in the city to provide direction and support in an effort to guide them away from unsafe situations and onto a productive path to be successful now and later in life is vital,” said Senator Browne, who serves on the Commission. “This grant funding will provide Allentown, Promise Neighborhoods of the Lehigh Valley and our citizens with resources to strengthen our neighborhoods and communities and work to provide a safer place for all our citizens to live and work. I am pleased to work with my colleagues in Allentown to ensure the city has the resources it needs to accomplish its mission.”
The primary goal of the project is to develop a credible program structure to address gun violence, ultimately reducing the number of gun-related assaults, robberies and homicides in the City of Allentown.
“A safer Allentown doesn’t happen from the top down, it happens from neighborhoods and communities coming together, and it’s on us to make sure they have the resources they need,” Rep. Schweyer said. “By supporting the partnership between Promise Neighborhood and the City of Allentown we’re giving the people the tools they need to make sure we have a safer city for everyone. I’m proud to stand with them now, and will keep fighting for more.”
The grant funding from PCCD comes at a critical time as Allentown, like every city of its size and population, has dealt with a number of violent and tragic events. At the same time, the Zero Youth Violence program, which focuses on reducing gun violence in Allentown, saw its previous grant expire and without additional funding was forced to reduce staff and delay programming.
“PCCD’s continued investment in Allentown hasn’t occurred in a vacuum,” Rep. Schlossberg said. “It exists because the city has an active and engaged police force and neighborhood groups, which can assist in making Allentown a safer place. This grant is reflective of the continued strength of our community, and our ability and desire to attack the criminals who want to drag this city back into a darker time.”
Funds from this grant will support salary for outreach workers and program coordinator, supplies and related costs for marketing and community outreach events, training and technical assistance.
PCCD’s mission is to enhance the quality, coordination and planning within the criminal and juvenile justice systems, to facilitate the delivery of services to victims of crime, and to increase the safety of our communities.
PCCD initiates, validates, and financially supports justice-related programs put forth by practitioners and experts in the justice system. It focuses on research, policy, planning, training, evidence-based programming, technology, outreach, and support services.
Matt Moyer (Senator Browne) 717-787-1349, firstname.lastname@example.org
Geoff Brace (Representative Schlossberg) 610-821-5577, email@example.com
Nancy Wilt (Representative Schweyer) 610-791-6270, firstname.lastname@example.org