MILWAUKEE, WI – Today, County Executive David Crowley signed legislation allocating $6.7 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds to six programs focused on addressing community violence. The signing comes just a little over two weeks after Executive Crowley addressed the ARPA taskforce and requested emergency funds to address the acute crisis of violence in facing communities throughout Milwaukee County.
“We’ve seen a violent start to the year in Milwaukee County and it is no secret that this remains a difficult time for all of us. We recognize the urgency of the problem in our streets and I’m proud of both the ARPA taskforce and the County Board for swiftly moving this request,” said County Executive David Crowley. “This was a unique opportunity to give our departments the tools they need to make a measurable, positive effect in the communities we serve. I applaud County leaders stepping up to meet the moment on behalf of county residents.”
The files signed today allocate crucial funding to the six following programs:
- Expand the Credible Messenger fellowship program. One of largest areas of community engagement for DHHS, engaged with residents and grassroots organizations to address needs of young adults. The focus is on community building and teen/youth engagement year around – not just when designing or evaluating programs.
- Trauma & crisis response beds, and wrap around mental health and substance abuse services on-site, for those who refuse to go to traditional shelters.
- Additional support to the Trauma Response Team so they are able to provide quicker and more comprehensive services to identify traumatic experiences and help guide youth away from using violence in the future and stop would be acts of violence before they can occur.
- A mental health and healing awareness campaign for DHHS and Office of Equity to work together to expand awareness of services and resources to vulnerable populations and promote mental wellness/healing strategies in ZIP code areas with a history of being harmed by inequitable policy.
- Safer Routes to County Parks by limiting the direct and indirect impacts of reckless driving on our parks system by implement physical improvements to the street crossings accessing our parks. (Ex: curb extensions, raised crosswalks, crosswalk painting, new signage, and new medians.)
- Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design which invests in physical improvements like lighting, line-of-sight optimization and getting rid of vacant buildings to increase the safety of our park-goers.