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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Florida

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, October 21, 2019

Department Of Justice Awards More than $85.3 Million in Grants to Address School Violence

Southern District of Florida Awarded More Than $3.4 Million in Funding for Safer Schools 

WASHINGTON – Today, the Department of Justice announced it has awarded more than $85.3 million to bolster school security—including funding to educate and train students and faculty—and support first responders who arrive on the scene of a school shooting or other violent incident.

“These federal resources will help to prevent school violence and give our students the support they need to learn, grow, and thrive,’ said Attorney General William P. Barr. “By training faculty, students and first responders, and by improving school security measures, we can make schools and their communities safer.”

“We must protect our children and stop the scourge of violence in schools,” stated U.S. Attorney Ariana Fajardo Orshan for the Southern District of Florida  “The millions of dollars in grant money that is being awarded to South Florida schools will help us to identify the threats, encourage reporting of potential dangers, provide critical health services and enhance school safety.  We are grateful to the Department for providing the Palm Beach County School District, Broward Sheriff’s Office, the School Boards of Miami-Dade and Broward Counties, the Miami-Dade County Public Schools Police Department, and countless other deserving communities with the resources needed to help support and protect our youth.”

The grants award more than $3.4 million in funding to prevent violence in schools in the Southern District of Florida. President Trump signed the STOP School Violence Act into law in March 2018, authorizing grants that are designed to improve threat assessments, train students and faculty to provide tips and leads, and prepare law enforcement officers and emergency professionals to respond to school shootings and other violent incidents. The grant programs are managed by OJP’s Bureau of Justice Assistance and the Justice Department’s Office of Community Oriented Policing Services.

The Bureau of Justice Assistance, within the Department’s Office of Justice Programs, and the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services manage the programs and administer the grants, which include funds to:

  • Develop school threat assessment teams and pursue technological solutions to improve reporting of suspicious activity in and around schools;
  • Implement or improve school safety measures, including coordination with law enforcement, as well as the use of metal detectors, locks, lighting and other deterrent measures;
  • Train law enforcement to help deter student violence against others and themselves;
  • Improve notification to first responders through implementation of technology that expedites emergency notifications;
  • Develop and operate anonymous reporting systems to encourage safe reporting of potential school threats;
  • Train school officials to intervene when mentally ill individuals threaten school safety; and
  • Provide training and technical assistance to schools and other awardees in helping implement these programs.
     

For more details about these individual award programs, as well as listings of individual 2019 awardees, visit https://go.usa.gov/xVJuV

About the Office of Justice Programs:

The Office of Justice Programs, directed by Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Katharine T. Sullivan, provides federal leadership, grants, training, technical assistance and other resources to improve the nation’s capacity to prevent and reduce crime, assist victims and enhance the rule of law by strengthening the criminal justice system. More information about OJP and its components can be found at www.ojp.gov.

About the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services:

The COPS Office is a federal agency responsible for advancing community policing nationwide. Since 1994, the COPS Office has invested more than $14 billion to advance community policing, including grants awarded to more than 13,000 state, local and tribal law enforcement agencies to fund the hiring and redeployment of approximately 130,000 officers and provide a variety of knowledge resource products including publications, training and technical assistance. For additional information about the COPS Office, please visit www.cops.usdoj.gov.

Updated October 7, 2021