Community Safety

Measures and Methods to Advance Research on Minority Health and Health Disparities-Related Constructs

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Measures and Methods to Advance Research on Minority Health and Health Disparities-Related Constructs

About

This grant funds research addressing how public health is impacted by crime and lack of non-carceral investments in safety. The grant aims to fund studies that measure the complex interplay of cultural, social, and environmental factors that shape an individual’s or population’s lived experience and their impact on health behaviors and outcomes. In particular, methodological approaches are needed to best assess health determinants beyond the individual level, including those at the interpersonal, family, organizational, neighborhood, community, and societal levels, as well as methods that integrate health determinants across levels. Advocates can use this grant to fund research about innovative public health safety measures and use the results of the research to persuasively argue for funding for these interventions.

Eligible Uses

A wide variety of research methods and their associated costs can be funded under this grant, see the grant solicitation for more information. 

Grant Award

Minimum: N/A

Maximum: $500,000

Eligible
Recipients

Independent school districts, nonprofits with or without 501(c)(3) status, special district governments, city or township governments, Native American tribal organizations, for-profit organizations other than small businesses, county governments, small businesses, public housing authorities/Indian housing authorities, private institutions of higher education, public and state-controlled institutions of higher education, and state governments

Restrictions

R01 Clinical Trial Not Allowed. There is no cost sharing requirement 

Due Date

February 10, 2023

Agency

Department of Health and Human Services (National Institutes of Health) 

Materials Needed

Unknown

Application Difficulty

Unknown

Evidence on Investments in Non-Carceral Crisis Response

Over the years, evidence has shown that programs of violence prevention and non-carceral crisis response dramatically improve community safety—even though they have received far less funding than traditional criminal-legal approaches. 80 percent of gender-based violence survivors report being somewhat or extremely afraid to call the police during a crisis. And yet, many non-police crisis responders have been highly successful at stemming violence. A study of Safe Streets, a Baltimore non-carceral “violence interruption” program, found that its outreach workers reduced serious violence by 69 percent. And robust research has shown that violence prevention programs in schools significantly reduce violent behavior. 

When someone is in crisis or otherwise vulnerable, jurisdictions should have trained professionals who are available to answer these calls and defuse dangerous situations. As this evidence shows, people in crisis need a helping hand, not a gun, to access the support that will help them avoid further harm

Evidence on Investments in Health and Treatment

To implement community safety-focused programs, jurisdictions must have an adequate supply of peers and professionals who can provide voluntary, non-coercive services that support physical and mental health—and allow appropriate staffing for non-carceral crisis response and similar programs. Expanding access to basic health care has been found to reduce crime, as well as save money on legal system expenses. Research demonstrates that when the number of treatment facilities for substance use disorder increases, crime decreases in the same area. Expanded access to mental health treatment, and psychiatric treatment in particular, has been found to reduce violent crime. 

This effect is especially powerful when looking at youth. Increasing wraparound services in schools that treat physical and mental health in high risk areas have been shown to reduce juvenile arrests as well as child abuse cases. High quality afterschool programs that promote students’ health and development can reduce drug use and decrease arrests and other forms of criminal-legal involvement among children. Furthermore, early childhood intervention programs, as well as nutrition programs for newborns, are likely to reduce crime. Expanded access to mental health treatment, and to psychiatric treatment in particular, has also been found to reduce violent crime. 

Community safety cannot succeed without a robust, well-trained workforce of mental health and treatment professionals—not only because these services can reduce violence and harm, but also because physical and mental health are vitally important for safety itself. For too long, this country has taken a punishment and enforcement approach to how we address mental health, substance use, and related issues; the following investments, paired with further public health-centered policy changes, are a first step toward changing this paradigm. 

Grant Writing Resources

Grants.Gov Resources

Applicant Training Videos (step-by-step guide on how to find grants, set up an account on grants.gov, and submit an application)

Applicant FAQ page

Other Resources

Community Toolbox’s Applying For Grants Toolkit (Outline of process + example applications)

FAQs

Q: What is community safety? 

A: We use the term “community safety” as well as “non-carceral safety” to indicate an approach to reducing violence and harm that invests in people over punishment. This can include unarmed civilian first responders and community violence prevention, but must also center preventative and root-caused focused solutions such as investments in schools, healthcare, and the environment. These solutions not only create holistic safety by improving well-being, they have been directly tied to reductions in violence. 

Q: How do the grants in the American Rescue Plan and other recent bills fit into this database? 

A: This database contains grants contained both in specific legislation (like the American Rescue Plan Act, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs act, and the Inflation Reduction act) but it focuses primarily on grants funded annually through the federal budget process. Please see our resources specifically on ARPA and IIJA for more information on funding opportunities in those bills. 

Q: Where should I go if I have additional questions? 

A: Feel free to reach out to samwashington@civilrightscorps.org with questions or comments. If you’d like to suggest a grant, please fill out this form

 

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