Office for Safe & Healthy Neighborhoods first to participate in Fund Peace Summit series
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (May 15, 2021) – Louisville Metro Government’s Office for Safe and Healthy Neighborhoods (OSHN) has been chosen to be the first stop in Cities United’s Fund Peace Summit cross-country series, celebrating grassroots organizations. As part of the series, OSHN staff will receive training and technical assistance to strengthen its gun violence reduction strategy. Fund Peace, a coalition of the nation’s leading Black and Brown gun violence prevention organizations, experts and community leaders, selected Louisville to kick off its summit series as it is one of many cities across the country that has been critically impacted by the pandemic and an uptick in violence.
“Our national partners are proactively supporting and pushing for organizations to have the resources to engage in evidence-based community violence intervention programs,” said OSHN director Monique Williams. “This support helps to elevate our team and partner’s efforts to curb the violence and effectively do the work that we know needs to be done for violence reduction.”
“We are happy to welcome the Fund Peace Summit and Dr. Chico Tillmon here to support OSHN’s continuing efforts to make Louisville a safer city,” said Mayor Greg Fischer. “We support the programming and training in violence prevention that will help OSHN further mentor, motivate and engage youth in our city.”
Fund Peace’s Dr. Chico Tillmon, a senior research fellow at the University of Chicago Urban Labs, is working on local and national initiatives to advance racial justice and equity, and reduce gun violence in selected cities. He was among a small group of national leaders working with the Biden administration to secure $5 billion in federal funding for evidence-based community violence intervention programs.
As one of the leaders of the initiative, he has been training OSHN’s team through a technical assistant partnership with Cities United, since Thursday.
“We believe through sufficient funding to Black and Brown-led violence prevention organizations, they can provide comprehensive services in vulnerable communities that address trauma and other root causes of violence,” said Dr. Tillmon. “We are echoing and supporting President Biden's request that states, cities and counties utilize a portion of the American Rescue Plan money they received to support cities like Louisville.”
Also today, OSHN’s national partners Fund Peace and Cities United announced they have selected local organization No More Red Dots to receive a $5,000 grant.
Established in 2011, No More Red Dots was named after the red dots used by Louisville Metro Police to track crimes in the city. The violence-prevention group, which includes more than 10 volunteers, is mentoring children to engage in educational and empowerment activities. No More Red Dots will use the $5,000 donation to continue to mediate and de-escalate potentially violent situations, said CEO Dr. Eddie Woods.
“We are honored to receive this generous donation from OSHN’s national partners Fund Peace and Cities United because it will continue to help make a difference in the lives of children in our community,” said Dr. Woods. “Thank you for helping us continue to change the narrative for youth who are plagued by gun violence.”
Today’s event also provided networking with local violence prevention partners that are committed to building safe and hopeful communities.
Mayor Fischer created the Office for Safe and Healthy Neighborhoods in March 2013 – one year after a triple homicide prompted him to convene a group of community, city, and business leaders to begin developing strategies for reducing violent deaths throughout the city of Louisville.