Haverhill Receives $214K State Grant to Combat Gang Violence

(File photograph.)

Beacon Hill is helping Haverhill combat gang violence. On Monday, the Baker-Polito Administration announced the city will share in more than $214,000 of state funding to curb youth violence in the Merrimack Valley.

This year, a shared grant in the amount of $185,000 has been awarded to Haverhill and Methuen, with an additional grant of nearly $30,000 earmarked for the cities’ UMass Lowell site. All told, Haverhill and Methuen saw nearly $58,000 in added funds compared to 2018. The money, allocated through the Senator Charles E. Shannon Jr., Community Safety Initiative (Shannon CSI) Grant Program, is a worthwhile investment in Haverhill, Police Chief Alan R. DeNaro said in a statement.

“The funding provided through this grant will enable the Haverhill Police Department and our partners to continue to provide critical services to at-risk youth in danger of falling victim to gang affiliation, criminal behavior and abandonment of educational and vocational opportunities designed to prepare them for productive futures in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.”

Such targeted community-based programming is key to improve the safety of the city, said state Rep. Andy Vargas.

“The Shannon Grant has proven to play a crucial role in Haverhill’s efforts to support public safety and combat gang violence in our city,” Vargas told WHAV. “If we can provide young people with positive opportunities through effective prevention and community-based intervention strategies, it will make Haverhill a safer place for everybody.”

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