Pittsburgh gun violence prevention programs awarded funding from the Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund
August 18, 2020
Mayor William Peduto has announced the Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund has issued grants to three groups promoting local gun violence prevention efforts. The funding is going to South Pittsburgh Coalition for Peace, CeaseFirePA Education Fund, and Black Women for Positive Change.
Mayor Peduto - a member of Everytown's Mayors Against Illegal Guns Coalition, which advocates for life-saving gun safety reforms - thanked the organization for its continued support in the city.
"The Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund has been a great partner in our efforts to get illegal guns out of Pittsburgh neighborhoods and across the state, and these generous grants to these impactful organizations will only help us and our residents further," Mayor Peduto said.
"Local gun violence intervention programs continue to serve a valuable role in communities hit hard by gun violence, despite long standing inequities now further exacerbated by the pandemic," said Michael-Sean Spence, director of Policy and Implementation at the Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund. "We're honored to stand with and support groups using evidence-based strategies to prevent shootings. With support from their communities, these groups can continue to make a difference in the lives of their communities."
Everytown Support Fund provided the funding through its Community Gun Violence Prevention Grant Program, the CityGRIP COVID Response Grant, and Wear Orange Community Grants. The funding includes:
• South Pittsburgh Coalition for Peace received $40,000 from the Community Gun Violence Prevention Grant Program. This program is in its second year and also includes a year of peer-to-peer counseling, convenings and training from Everytown Support Fund staff and subject matter experts.
• CeasefirePA Education Fund received a $20,000 CityGrip COVID Response Grant to support community-based gun violence education programs that are continuing the life-saving work of helping prevent violence that has been exacerbated during and after COVID-19
• Black Women for Positive Change received a $20,000 Wear Orange Community Grant, which was in recognition of National Gun Violence Awareness Day on June 5. Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action volunteers fundraised to support community groups across the country working at the intersection of racial justice and gun violence prevention.
"The South Pittsburgh Coalition for Peace is very humbled and grateful to Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund for their continued grant support for our South Pittsburgh Peacemakers initiative as we strive to intervene and interrupt street violence and target shooters in South Pittsburgh," said the coalition's Director, the Rev. Eileen Smith. "Being part of the Everytown 'family' has been an amazing experience. The training, peer-to-peer counseling, personal support and vast resources made available to us has been priceless. We thank Everytown for helping us to save lives."
"As the Pittsburgh Outreach Chair of Black Women for Positive Change, I hope many are aware of our ongoing commitment to end gun violence and create systems that support our families, youth and communities of color. We are proud that our efforts have been recognized by Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America and Everytown," Diane Powell from Black Women for Positive Change. "Gun violence doesn't stop because of Covid-19, and neither does the movement to stop it."
"While the County continues to address the pandemic, the ongoing public health crisis of gun violence is worsening in our communities. Firearm sales have spiked to record levels and now we're seeing a growing wave of violence. Everytown's ongoing partnership and support will allow us to expand the reach of our Leadership Institutes to educate, engage, and empower communities to more effectively combat gun violence," said Rob Conroy, director of organizing for CeaseFirePA.