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Giffords Praises President Biden’s Build Back Better Plan for Historic Investment in Community Violence Intervention

The proposed $5 billion would fund programs and strategies on the front line of curbing our country’s gun violence epidemic

WASHINGTON, DC — Today, Giffords praised President Biden for including an unprecedented $5 billion to fund critical and lifesaving community violence intervention (CVI) initiatives as part of his Build Back Better agenda. As gun deaths skyrocketed during the COVID-19 pandemic, with Black and Brown communities bearing the brunt of that increase, this funding will be critical in helping stem the violence roiling cities across our country.  

CVI programs seek to curb gun violence by focusing resources on the small fraction of the population at the highest risk for engaging in gun violence. They often employ violence interrupters—members of the community who put themselves on the front lines of gun violence by helping identify, intervene in, and mediate violent conflicts. Although a wide-range of these programs have been proven effective in stemming gun violence, they have historically been severely underfunded

Statement from Paul Carrillo, Giffords Community Violence Initiative Director

“We are going to need bold, transformative solutions to end the gun violence epidemic in our country. Today, President Biden reaffirmed his commitment to addressing this crisis  by including a historic $5 billion investment in community violence intervention initiatives in his updated Build Back Better plan, an investment that will allow community violence programs to realize their full promise. 

Community violence programs are so effective precisely because they are community-led and community-driven. This funding will provide the violence intervention workers who put their lives on the line every day to end gun violence in their communities with the resources they desperately need to do their jobs. We hope to see Congress move swiftly to pass this legislation and invest in these lifesaving programs.”

Over the summer, Giffords Law Center interviewed more than 200 violence intervention workers across four cities and recently published the findings in a report highlighting the importance of CVI workers, exploring the support and resources these individuals have access to, and making recommendations to bolster CVI work around the country. 
More information on CVI can be found here.