By Staff –
Gov. Andrew Cuomo joined Mayor Lovely Warren at the Genesee St. Boys and Girls Club Tuesday to announce Rochester will receive over $14 million to combat gang violence and opioid addiction, as part of the state’s new SNUG and Gun Involved Violence Elimination Initiatives, and the governor’s efforts to curb opioid use throughout the state.
“We have a coming together of two different problems, which are combining and creating a more difficult issue,” Gov. Cuomo stated. “We have the gang problem, which we’ve been dealing with for a long time, and that has been getting worse, and we have the opioid heroin problem which is getting worse, and exploding.”
According to Cuomo, the city will receive $1.74 million from the state to advance an evidence- and data-based program that will map hot spots of gang activity in the area, and $500,000 for the SNUG program, which will fund community-based intervention programs. Action for a Better Community will administer the SNUG programs.
The city will also receive $12 million to combat the heroin opioid crisis in the region, the governor stated.
“Fighting heroin and opioid addiction, the only way to do it is a comprehensive approach,” Gov. Cuomo said. “The earlier you get the person into treatment, the higher the likelihood of success. It is that simple. …We have not had the treatment capacity, and in this state budget we provided resources. We’ll be giving the city of Rochester $12 million to reduce opioid addiction.”
According to the governor, the state will also add 10 additional state troopers to the four already embedded within the Rochester Police Department, to target neighborhoods with high levels of gang activity.
“You put that together, it’s going to make a difference,” Gov. Cuomo stated. “And, I’m pleased and proud to be part of the partnership. And it is a fight that we have to win.”
Cuomo’s office said three out of five homicides in Rochester have a suspected connection to gang activity, and the new funds will reduce the violence and illegal activity of 150 criminal organizations, and 800 members in the area.
Visit https://vimeo.com/215701664 to view video from the event, or click on the image below.