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MAPC’s Metro Mayors Coalition Receives Shannon Grant

MAPC's Metro Mayors Coalition Receives Shannon Grant to Combat Gang and Youth Violence

In eight Metro Boston communities that have banded together to combat gang and youth violence, thousands of young people participate in athletic leagues, job placement programs, music and arts programs, and other community-building efforts every year. Programming will continue to improve in 2020: we’re excited to announce that the Metro Mayors Community Safety Initiative (CSI) (made up of Cambridge, Chelsea, Everett, Malden, Quincy, Revere, Somerville, and Winthrop) received $650,000 to continue its work.

A Note on COVID-19:

In light of the devastating toll COVID-19 has taken on CSI member communities, MAPC, the Metro Mayors Coalition, and our partners will work hard to adapt youth programming over the course of 2020 to respond to the pandemic and make sure our young people stay safe.

Funding comes from the Senator Charles E. Shannon Jr. Grant to prevent youth and gang violence. Throughout the state, $11 million was awarded to 15 sites (27 communities) and 13 local research partners for 2020. MAPC is the site manager for the Metro Mayors CSI, which is a subset of the 14-community Metro Mayors Coalition.

The Shannon Community Safety Initiative program is nationally recognized for deterring youth violence, gang violence, and substance abuse. Between 2014 and 2018, communities with Shannon-funded programs experienced a 47.3% decrease in the number of arrests for aggravated assault and a 21.7% decrease in arrests for simple assaults involving youth ages 10 to 24.

The grant honors Senator Charles Shannon, a Massachusetts state senator who represented the Second Middlesex district from 1991 until 2005. He served as a police officer for 20 years and worked to diminish gang violence in Somerville during his time in the Senate. After his death, the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security began administering the Charles E. Shannon Jr. Community Safety Initiative, a grant program that supports “regional and multi-disciplinary approaches to combat gang violence through coordinated programs for prevention and intervention.”

The grant process is competitive: every year, MAPC submits a comprehensive plan to provide a coordinated prevention and suppression strategy across the eight communities.

In the Metro Mayors CSI area, prevention and law enforcement partners work with communities to provide programs that serve thousands of youth, including an annual basketball tournament, and the Shannon Day on the Hill, which brings together program youth with police chiefs, legislators, and municipal officers each spring.

The $650,000 grant will be split between funding for law enforcement, employment services, recreation, music/arts programming, community mobilization, and youth mental health support.

Funding Breakdown: FY2020 Metro Mayors Coalition Shannon Grant

In 2020, several prevention partners also committed to offer their programs in other communities upon request. Additional funding will also go toward regionally based youth mental health services.

The Shannon Grant also supports “hot-spot” patrols conducted by local law enforcement, who often work together across municipal boundaries to patrol the region’s known gang areas and establish dialogues with young people.

MAPC looks forward to serving as the site manager for the Metro Mayors Shannon CSI for 2020. If you would like to learn more about the work of the Community Safety Initiative or the Coalition, please contact the MMC’s Shannon Grant Site Manager Austin Murray at amurray@mapc.org, or visit our Metro Mayors Coalition site.

Our Partners:

Thanks to our partners, who work every day to connect young people in our region to opportunities and keep them away from gang violence and substance abuse.

  • Cambridge Youth Programs
  • Center for teen Empowerment (Somerville)
  • Jordan Boys and Girls Club (Chelsea)
  • City of Malden
  • Community Art Center (Cambridge)
  • Everett Teen Enrichment Center (Malden YMCA)
  • Quincy Recreation Department
  • CAPIC/Revere Police Activation League
  • ROCA, Inc (Chelsea)
  • Community Against Substance Abuse (Winthrop)
  • Cambridge Police Department
  • Everett Police Department
  • Malden Police Department
  • Quincy Police Department
  • Revere Police Department
  • Somerville Police Department
  • Winthrop Police Department
  • Chelsea Police Department