Press Release

Press Release Governor Healey Joins Community Leaders, Prosecutors and Police to Announce Nearly $1.5 Million in Summer Safety Funding

Safer Communities Initiative Fosters Collaborative Approach to Public Safety
For immediate release:
  • Governor Maura Healey and Lt. Governor Kim Driscoll
  • Executive Office of Public Safety and Security
  • Office of Grants and Research

Media Contact for Governor Healey Joins Community Leaders, Prosecutors and Police to Announce Nearly $1.5 Million in Summer Safety Funding

Karissa Hand, Press Secretary

Worcester — Governor Maura Healey today convened community partners, state public safety officials, District Attorneys, and police to discuss collaborative community partnerships that have proven impacts on public safety. During the event, Governor Healey announced that the state has invested nearly $1.5 million in federal grant funds to support violence prevention, response and community engagement efforts through the summer and fall months when violent crime is often at its peak. 

The Safer Communities Initiative is offered by the Office of Grants and Research (OGR), a state agency that is part of the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security (EOPSS). The program provides funding to District Attorneys and Massachusetts State Police, which is made available through the federal Edward J. Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) Program. 

The Safer Communities Initiative takes an innovative approach to addressing community violence by requiring District Attorney’s Offices to dedicate half of their awarded funds to projects aimed at prevention, intervention and/or diversion programming. The remainder of the funds are intended to support enforcement and prosecution.  In addition, a portion of the funds received by State Police will support youth programming.   

“The Safer Communities grant program invests in the success of strong partnerships, and underscores the importance of a team approach to the prevention, intervention and enforcement strategies needed to improve community safety and reach at-risk youth,” said Governor Maura Healey. “No single agency can do it alone, but working as partners, across disciplines and jurisdictions, we can make meaningful changes in young people’s lives.” 

“The Safer Communities Initiative takes a holistic approach to preventing and responding to violent crime through enforcement and youth engagement. This public safety model empowers community partners to deliver vital services that will support at-risk youth, improve outcomes, and promote public safety,” said Lt. Governor Kimberley Driscoll. “Our Administration is pleased to support innovative collaborations the prevent violence, protect communities, and support our youth’s ability to thrive.”  

The Safer Communities Initiative has proven to be successful in reducing crime in prior years.  District Attorneys and their community partners provide impactful programming for at-risk youth that included skill building, personal development, and services to address areas of need such as trauma and substance use. Grant-funded enforcement efforts conducted in partnership between State Police and local police resulted in the removal of 95 illegally possessed firearms from Massachusetts communities and the seizure of approximately 44,000 grams of heroin and fentanyl, 2,900 grams of cocaine and crack and 4,000 grams of marijuana, according to State Police data from July through December 2022.

“Youth violence has a profound impact on victims, families, and communities. Strong partnerships and collaborative result-driven solutions remain the most effective way to address the complex issues that drive gun violence,” said Secretary of Public Safety and Security Terrence Reidy. “The administration is proud to provide resources in support of the hard work and community collaborations designed to improve community safety, reduce gun violence and strengthen youth engagement.”   

“We are grateful to the Healey-Driscoll Administration, the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security and the Department of Justice for their support of initiatives designed to address and prevent violent crime. The efforts undertaken by the State Police in collaboration with our local partners are enhanced by this support,” said State Police Interim Colonel John Mawn, Jr. “Grant funding directly and positively impacts our work with our local partners to investigate, interdict, enforce, and prevent gun, drug, and other street crimes and the violence associated with these crimes. These combined efforts are an important component among several strategies we employ to help make our neighborhoods safer for those who live in, work in, visit, and raise families in Massachusetts.” 

“I want to thank the Healey-Driscoll Administration for funding prevention and intervention programs which help the communities of Worcester County through a two-pronged approach. They focus on supporting crime prevention programs that help at-risk youth and reducing gang and gun violence. Funding for prevention and intervention is the most successful way to fight crime, especially at this level,” said Worcester County District Attorney Joseph D. Early Jr. “The Safer Communities Initiative brings together police, community groups and prosecutors working together to combat youth violence through prevention efforts that help empower our children, who are our future. Working together is a force multiplier.” 

“One of the most important goals of the Worcester Police Department is preventing gun violence,” said Worcester Police Chief Steven Sargent. “We believe in a collaborative approach and have had great success by working with our partners to prevent violence and create positive outcomes for youth.”  

“The Safer Communities Initiative is designed to address unmet community needs while enhancing efforts to prevent and respond to gang-related violence, drug distribution and other serious crimes impacting Massachusetts communities. The program is one key element of the Office of Grants and Research’s work improving safety and security across the Commonwealth,” said OGR Executive Director Kevin Stanton. 

The Safer Communities Initiative is one of several programs administered by OGR focused on preventing youth and gang-related violence. OGR manages the Shannon Community Safety Initiative and partners with the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts to administer Project Safe Neighborhoods


Grant Recipient  

Award Amount 

Berkshire District Attorney's Office  


Essex District Attorney's Office  


Hampden District Attorney's Office  


Middle District Attorney's Office  


Middlesex District Attorney's Office  


Norfolk District Attorney's Office  


Northwestern District Attorney's Office  


Plymouth District Attorney's Office  


Suffolk District Attorney's Office  


Massachusetts State Police-Boston 


Massachusetts State Police-Lawrence/Brockton 


Massachusetts State Police-Springfield/Holyoke 


Massachusetts State Police – Youth Programming 





Media Contact for Governor Healey Joins Community Leaders, Prosecutors and Police to Announce Nearly $1.5 Million in Summer Safety Funding

  • Governor Maura Healey and Lt. Governor Kim Driscoll 

    Governor Healey and Lieutenant Governor Driscoll are committed to bringing people together and making Massachusetts a place where every worker, business and family can succeed.
  • Executive Office of Public Safety and Security 

    EOPSS is responsible for the policy development and budgetary oversight of its secretariat agencies, independent programs, and several boards which aid in crime prevention, homeland security preparedness, and ensuring the safety of residents and visitors in the Commonwealth.
  • Office of Grants and Research 

    The Office of Grants and Research (OGR) promotes public safety and security in Massachusetts communities through the management of grants funds and research programs focused on crime prevention and intervention, traffic safety, law enforcement and homeland security initiatives. OGR manages more than $150 million in state and federal grants that are distributed to state, municipal, education and nonprofit agencies across the Commonwealth.
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