Project Safe Neighborhoods is a nationwide commitment to reduce gun crime in America. It is designed to bring all levels of law enforcement together to make our urban communities safer.
The Bush Administration committed over $1.5 billion to this effort from PSN’s inception in 2001 until its funding ended in 2010. This funding was used to hire new federal and state prosecutors, support investigators, provide training, distribute gun lock safety kits, deter juvenile gun crime, and develop and promote community outreach efforts as well as support other gun violence reduction strategies.
The Plymouth County District Attorney’s Office continued this effort by referring the areas worst criminals for federal prosecution. In 2015, District Attorney Cruz created a multi-agency task force entitled: “The Operation Safe Streets Initiative” Members of this task force continue to meet regularly to collect data, share information and gather intelligence on problem areas and individuals within Brockton and its surrounding communities.
Operation Safe Streets is modeled after Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN). Community meetings that once occurred during the PSN initiative have been reconvened to allow for open channels of communication between law enforcement and area residents to discuss ongoing concerns within the community.
“I WITNESSED FIRST-HAND THE DIFFERENCE PSN MADE IN OUR NEIGHBORHOODS DURING SOME OF THE DEADLIEST TIMES IN OUR CITY. I AM HOPEFUL THAT OPERATION SAFE STREETS WILL MOBILIZE LAW ENFORCEMENT TO REINVIGORATE THESE CRIMINAL JUSTICE PHILOSOPHIES AND RETURN SOME SENSE OF SECURITY TO THE RESIDENTS OF BROCKTON AND SURROUNDING AREAS.”–DISTRICT ATTORNEY TIM CRUZ
Attorney General Jeff Sessions reinvigorated PSN, in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals. He directed all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.
The US Attorney for the District of Massachusetts chose the City of Brockton as one of his 10 PSN sites. The new PSN funding will work cooperatively with and be utilized through our “Operation Safe Streets Initiative”.
Prior Project Safe Neighborhoods Initiative
On June 5, 2008, The Plymouth County District Attorney’s office was selected as a PSN award recipient and received a $100,000 Grant from the United States Attorney‘s Office to address local gun and gang problems. The funding came from the Department of Justice Project Safe Neighborhood (PSN) Initiative. The grant supported prevention and outreach programs, and funded criminal investigations by the State Police and the Brockton Police.
In response to the award of the grant, District Attorney Timothy J. Cruz stated, “These funds will go a long way in helping us continue our multi-front battle against the gun and street violence that has plagued the city of Brockton. The funds will help us reduce firearm related crime and violence by identifying the hot spots where the violence occurs, as well as, those serious repeat offenders who create most of the violence. On the prevention side, these funds will allow us to continue to support community and faith based outreach programs, to provide training and technical assistance in gang awareness for the faculty of the Brockton Public Schools and to support the Mayor’s Summer Faith Based Youth Employment program”.
“This grant exemplifies the collaboration that currently exists between all levels of government,” said Mayor James E. Harrington. “Our youth face all kinds of barriers in their daily lives; this grant will without a doubt help ease the stresses placed by our budgetary constrains and allow us to augment the services that we are currently providing to the children of Brockton”.