Gov. Murphy, AG Platkin announce $20M in state and federal violence intervention grants available for community organizations, hospitals
The Community-Based and Hospital-Based Violence Intervention Programs are focused on ending cycles of violence across New Jersey
NEW JERSEY — Governor Phil Murphy and Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin Wednesday announced that a combined $20 million in state and federal grants would be made available through the Community-Based Violence Intervention (CBVI) Program and Hospital-Based Violence Intervention Program (HVIP).
Designed to work with victims in the wake of violent incidents and with individuals and communities impacted by gun violence and at risk of violence, these programs are critical to the state’s public safety efforts to reduce cycles of violence at their source. This goes along with Attorney General Platkin’s creation of the Division of Violence Intervention and Victim Assistance (VIVA) in September 2022 to provide structure and permanent support for these innovative programs.
The CBVI and HVIP programs are each funded at $10 million. CBVI was part of Governor Murphy’s Fiscal Year 2023 Budget, and this is the second straight year that the Administration included $10 million for violence intervention work in New Jersey’s communities. As previously announced in August 2022, Governor Murphy has allocated $10 million in federal American Rescue Plan (ARP) funds to continue the HVIP funding for at least another 12 months after current Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) dollars, HVIP’s funding source, are expended.
“Today’s funding announcement of the CBVI and HVIP programs reaffirms this Administration’s commitment to those affected by violence in our state,” Murphy said. “Attorney General Platkin and his team have done great work thus far in supporting some of the most vulnerable individuals and communities in our state affected by various types of violence. I look forward to our continued partnership in addressing the needs of these individuals and preventing violence in our communities across New Jersey.”
“Thanks to Governor Murphy, we are investing $20 million to address the root causes of harm in our communities and end cycles of violence before they start. This is, simply put, an essential aspect of our innovative approach to public safety in New Jersey,” Platkin said. “By investing in those on the front lines addressing violence in our communities and in our hospitals, we are making clear our commitment to these programs in making New Jersey a safer place for all residents.”
“These programs illustrate how New Jersey is a pioneer in combatting violence by placing the response to victims’ and communities’ needs at the forefront of efforts to interrupt the cycles of violent crime, particularly in municipalities and regions most impacted by violence,” said Patricia Teffenhart, Executive Director of VIVA.
The Department of Law and Public Safety is now accepting applications from nonprofits and other community organizations for these grant funds, as described in the Notices of Availability of Funds (NOAFs) that the Department is releasing to the public today.
Eligible applicants for the competitive grant funding can apply for potential grant awards at www.njoag.gov/resources/grant-opportunities.
These grant opportunities build on previous efforts by the Administration which has made New Jersey a national leader on reducing gun violence, marked by an unprecedented increase in funding for anti-violence initiatives and for victims, including the largest set of investments in the state’s history for the CBVI and HVIP programs. Together, these two programs currently serve 11 municipalities across the state, many of which are the state’s leading centers of gun violence.
VIVA, along with the CBVI program and HVIP, mark a transformation in New Jersey in how law enforcement approaches public safety. VIVA will provide the leadership and dedicated professionals to develop, guide and expand programs like CBVI and HVIP.
In 2021, Governor Murphy and the Attorney General’s Office announced a new initiative to expand violence intervention work in New Jersey through $10 million in state funding to establish the CBVI program. This program represented the largest single investment in community-based violence intervention in the state’s history.
The CBVI funding reflects a key component of the Murphy Administration’s efforts to tackle the root causes of violent crime. Through the CBVI program, non-profit community service providers receive funding for the development and implementation of violence intervention and prevention programming for communities impacted by higher-than-average rates of violence, with a focus on gun violence.
Currently, CBVI grants directly fund more than 20 community organizations in every region of the state, supporting intervention strategies that help communities reduce gun violence by developing healing relationships among the groups and individuals who are at the center of gun violence.
These efforts include funding for violence interventionists, individuals who identify those who are at a high risk for committing violence, and work with them to stop the trigger from being pulled; experienced individuals who create safe passageways for students traveling to and from school in areas plagued by violent crime; credible messengers who work with guidance counselors in schools to help connect youth experiencing trauma and who are at risk for violence and victimization to services; and grief counseling for children of victims of gun violence.
The state’s HVIP program, which funds hospitals in partnership with community-based victim services, puts social services at victims’ bedside in the aftermath of violence, connecting them to critical aid that prevents retaliation and revictimization. The program has laid the foundation and infrastructure for efforts to combat future violence that begin in the aftermath of a violent incident.
First announced in 2019, the inaugural HVIP program allocated $20 million in federal VOCA dollars to reach gun violence victims and others touched by violence at the time of crisis. In light of a decline in federal VOCA funds that would continue to support HVIPs, the Attorney General’s Office worked with the Murphy Administration to identify alternative sources of funding – ARP dollars – to maintain HVIPs across the state.