Ten organizations in communities across the state with some of the highest rates of gun violence will share a state outlay of more than $8 million as part of an effort to prevent and reduce gun violence and other violent crime among youth and young adults, Governor Baker’s office said on Monday in announcing the grants.
“Massachusetts’s strong gun laws have helped lead to some of the lowest rates of gun violence in the nation but there is always more that we can do to keep the Commonwealth’s communities safe,” said Baker. “Since taking office, our administration has committed more than $40 million to prevent youth violence and combat gang activity in the Commonwealth and we look forward to the work these agencies will do with today’s grants in their local communities.”
“I was proud when the House originated the funding for this program – which is designed to empower communities with the resources to study and find solutions to the root causes of gun violence that disproportionately takes a toll on those living in urban neighborhoods and particularly on young people of color,” said House Speaker Robert DeLeo.
In 2016, there were 245 firearm deaths in Massachusetts, of which just over a third were homicides. Records show that gun violence is the leading cause of death for 17-24 year olds in the Commonwealth, with 63 percent of homicides due to a firearm. While Massachusetts has the lowest firearm death rate in the nation, over half of all victims of firearm-related injuries (55 percent) are between the ages of 15-24, and black youth ages 15-24 had 32 times the rate of hospitalizations due to a firearm assault compared to white youth.
The following is a listing of the local organizations that have received grants based on each agency’s proposed program model and activities for the community being served.
• College Bound (Dorchester): $1,200,000.
• More Than Words (South End Roxbury, Dorchester, Mattapan): $650,920.
• Mothers for Justice and Equality (Dorchester, Roxbury, and Mattapan): $556,360.
• Madison Park Development Corporation (Roxbury): $751,270.