Buffalo, NY

Three New York Police Departments to Get $1.5 Million in Funding for Federal Pilot Project

J.M. Lesinski

A shot of the former New York State Police barracks in Boston, New York.Photo byPhoto by J.M. Lesinski

New York State Governor Kathy Hochul recently announced the allocation of $1.5 million dollars in federal funding for the Buffalo, Schenectady, and Yonkers police departments over the next five years to implement a series of pilot programs with the goal of providing an alternative to arrest for youth involved with the justice department and as means of building trust among the police and local community.

"New York State is committed to ensuring that our justice system is fair to support our youth and improve public safety for all New Yorkers," Hochul noted of the funding. "I'm proud to announce this $1.5 million in federal funding, which will support our state's efforts to help law enforcement and community leaders partner together to ensure that our youth have the services and opportunities they need to build healthy futures and safe communities."

Each police department receives roughly $514,000 in total to develop the programs with the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services Office of Youth Justice, keeping in mind the state’s formal diversion process that occurs following an arrest.

"Providing diversion and trust-building programming alternatives to arrests in appropriate cases is a way our department can build relationships with the younger members of the public in a positive way,” stated Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia of the funding. “Keeping youth engaged and teaching them life skills is a net positive for the entire community and provides a better future for the individuals."

The Office of Youth Justice’s primary role will be to identify the best applicable services available to at-risk youth in Erie, Schenectady and Westchester counties, while also exploring eligibility and policy requirements and identifying service gaps and any other existing barriers.

"This critical federal funding announced by Governor Hochul will address crime before it happens through supporting kids in vulnerable communities," Lieutenant Governor Antonio Delgado remarked of the funding. "I am proud to be a part of an administration that is putting a renewed focus on the issues and challenges facing the youth of New York."

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I have worked as a professional journalist for over five years now, covering the arts, music, food, politics, and culture up and down both coasts of the United States. I have a B.A. in English from SUNY Fredonia with minors in Psychology and Creative Writing, as well as an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from California State University, Fresno.

Buffalo, NY

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