NEW HAVEN POLICE AWARDED TWO CAPACITY BUILDING GRANTS TOTALING MORE THAN $400,000
(8/27/2007) New Funds to be Used to Increase Community Involvement, Anti-Gang Efforts and other Crime-Fighting Initiatives
NEW HAVEN- The New Haven Police Department has been awarded two grants that will be used to enhance community policing in the City. This increase in funding provides New Haven Police with the resources to expand community policing initiatives aimed at reducing gun violence, drug dealing and neighborhood crimes while also supporting community enrichment programs such as drug education for youth, block watches, the Citizen’s Police Academy and more.
“We appreciate the support of our partners as we continue to grow our community policing model,” said Police Chief Francisco Ortiz. “These grants make it possible for us to offer crime prevention education and resources to our residents, teach our children about the importance of being drug-free and step-up patrol presence in hot-spots throughout the City. We have a strong department that is only made stronger through the generous support of the Weed and Seed and JAG programs.”
The first grant, in the amount of $200,000, is made possible through the United States Department of Justice (US DOJ) for the Weed and Seed program in the Hill neighborhood. In August of 2003, the Hill neighborhood was granted official recognition by the US DOJ making it eligible to apply for Weed and Seed funds to “weed out” crime and “seed” the neighborhood to better enable neighborhood residents to sustain reductions in crime. New Haven Police will apply these funds toward reducing gang crime in the Hill and increasing patrol assignment to both Hill North and Hill South to target drug trafficking and gun spots in the area. The Department’s Firearms unit will also benefit from this grant allowing for an increase in drug and weapons investigations.
The Weed and Seed Steering Committee will coordinate activities with other city agencies, such as the Livable City Initiative, to reduce blight and improve neighborhood conditions. Grant funds will cover the salary and benefits for the full time Weed and Seed Coordinator position. Funds will also be made available to provide Hill youth with positive youth development programs such as participation in the nationally recognized camp DEFY program (Drug Education For Youth), and programs directed at juvenile offenders.
The second grant, in the amount of $203,495.00, comes from the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) and will be used to enhance the ability of New Haven Police to respond to public safety needs, engage the community and implement crime prevention initiatives. JAG funding will allow the Department to continue its Tactical and Administrative Strategies through Crime Analysis (TASCA) program to provide a more cost-effective and efficient method for police to solve crimes.
The TASCA program involves officers from the Crime Analysis Unit analyzing crime data to identify trends and important information that can be used by the department’s leadership to make patrol assignments, provide crime prevention education to residents and anticipate areas that need special attention. Funding from this grant will help New Haven Police provide responses to problem areas by enhancing enforcement, purchasing equipment and conducting community organizing (such as developing and strengthening block watches and community management teams).
JAG funds will also be used to support the Citizen’s Police Academy as a vehicle through which community members may become more knowledgeable and involved to cooperate with law enforcement and assist in solving neighborhood problems. The Department’s Division of Training and Education will coordinate this ten week course which includes instruction on topics such as community policing, crime prevention, police ethics, penal code, and search and seizure laws.
Further, grant funds will be set aside to provide specialized police training for supervisors and officers in areas such as first line supervision, investigative techniques, ethics, domestic violence, and other critical police functions.
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