CHICAGO (WMBD) — Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed a trailer bill to the Reimagine Public Safety Act (RPSA) that creates the Office of Firearm Violence Prevention (OFVP) in order to develop holistic solutions to the problem of gun violence statewide.
The OFVP will aim its efforts on communities with the highest rates of violence while offering resources for violence intervention programs.
Illinois is expanding its evidence-based violence prevention services by identifying community-based organizations to serve as advisors to the initiative through a Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) released by the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS). Through youth development programs and trauma-based services, the grants will assist the organizations in reducing gun violence.
The state will release additional funding opportunity notices in the coming weeks to identify community partners across Illinois.
Pritzker said the RPSA aims to tackle the issue on several fronts by:
- Advancing the state’s commitment to make an unprecedented investment in public safety
- Utilizing data to inform where help is most needed
- Addressing both immediate needs and systematic change to reduce gun violence
- Reaching even more communities that have historically been left to fend for themselves
“No law can change the past or give back a life. But what we can do, we must do – and thanks to the Reimagine Public Safety plan, we are putting an unprecedented amount of dollars on the ground to save lives,” Pritzker said.
The bill diversifies the neighborhoods where community-based organizations are eligible for grants in order to reach communities with higher concentrations of violence.
“We can no longer rely on the same approach if we want to solve the escalating problem of violence caused by failed policies and decades of disinvestment,” said Lt. Governor Juliana Stratton. “We must be proactive, and we must provide resources for equitable violence prevention. The Reimagine Public Safety Act does just that.”
Community organizations looking to apply for state funding can access the RPSA Violence Prevention Training, Technical Assistance and Support NOFO here.