Leaders Announce Funding for Nonprofit Security Grant Program

(Pittsburgh, Pa.) — Community and elected leaders today joined together at the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh to announce $4.5 million in funding for the Nonprofit Security Grant Fund Program.

The program is funded by Act 83 of 2019 and administered by the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD).

“Folks should be able to gather, to worship, to play without fear of violence targeted at them because of who they love, their faith or their ethnicity. I wish we didn’t need these grants; I wish our community organizations were safe from acts of hate — but we’ve seen that’s not the case. This grant program has helped and will continue to help groups protect themselves and prevent violence. I’ll continue to fight for its funding as long as it’s needed.”

Senator Jay Costa

President and CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, Jeffrey H. Finkelstein, provided perspective: “In 2021, the number of suspicious and antisemitic incidents in Pittsburgh doubled, so Jewish Pittsburgh is grateful for PCCD funding. The funding will help Jewish organizations continue their important work. More broadly, we know that, when antisemitism rises, other faith-based communities and minorities are also being targeted. Funds from the PCCD Nonprofit Security Grant Program help safeguard Greater Pittsburgh as a whole.”

Arielle Frankston-Morris, executive director of Teach PA, a project of the Orthodox Union added, “The rise of antisemitism and other hate crimes continue to be a stark and painful reality in Pennsylvania and nationwide, and the horrifying event in Colleyville magnifies the gravity of the situation. We are indebted to Governor Wolf, Leader Costa and Representative Frankel, and all of the members of the General Assembly who supported this effort, sharing a vision of a safe, bright future for all Pennsylvanians and ensuring that vulnerable groups are readied with crucial funding and resources when it’s needed most. We also appreciate our coalition partners, including Jewish Federations across the commonwealth and the Pennsylvania Jewish Coalition.”

Act 83 directs PCCD to administer grants to nonprofit organizations who principally serve individuals, groups or institutions that are included within a bias motivation category for single bias hate crime incidents as identified by the FBI’s Hate Crime Statistics publication. The categories include:

  • Race/ethnicity/ancestry
  • Religion
  • Sexual orientation
  • Disability
  • Gender
  • Gender identity

Applicants are eligible for security enhancements designed to protect the safety and security of the users of a facility located in the Commonwealth that is owned or operated by the nonprofit organization. Eligible expenses for security enhancements include the following:

  • Safety and security planning
  • Purchase of safety and security equipment
  • Purchase of security-related technology, which may include, but is not limited to:
    • Metal detectors
    • Protective lighting
    • Surveillance equipment
    • Special emergency communications equipment
    • Electronic locksets
    • Deadbolts
    • Trauma kits
    • Theft control devices
  • Safety and security training
  • Threat awareness and response training
  • Upgrades to existing structures that enhance safety and security
  • Vulnerability and threat assessments
  • Specialty-trained canines
  • Any other safety or security-related project that enhances safety or security of the nonprofit organization

For more information, visit www.pccd.pa.gov/schoolsafety/Pages/Non-Profit-Security-Grant-Fund.aspx

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