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NH Delegation Announces over $2.5 Million Headed to Support School Safety and Smart Policing Initiatives in Manchester and Laconia

(Washington, D.C.)— U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), chair of the U.S. Senate Appropriations Subcommittee that funds the Department of Justice (DOJ), and Maggie Hassan (D-NH) announced today with Congresswoman Annie Kuster (NH-02) and Congressman Chris Pappas (NH-01) over $2.5 million in federal funds headed to New Hampshire to support school safety and smart policing initiatives in the communities of Manchester and Laconia. These funds were allocated through the DOJ’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP), which provides federal resources to prevent and reduce crime, advance equity and fairness in the administration of justice, assist victims and uphold the rule of law. 

“Every student should feel safe and supported in school, which is why I’m glad that these federal funds will help bolster school safety measures and implement modernized, efficient policing practices in Manchester and Laconia,” said Senator Shaheen. “As Congress works to finalize government funding legislation for the next fiscal year, I’ll keep working to increase investments for school safety and smart community policing efforts.”

“Keeping our children safe at school requires training to recognize and act upon any dangerous warning signs from someone who might commit violence,” said Senator Hassan. “Last summer, I supported the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act to get communities the resources and training needed to help prevent tragedies before they happen, and I am glad to see this important funding coming to Manchester and Laconia to help strengthen school safety.” 

“New Hampshire students and teachers shouldn’t have to worry about their safety while at school,” said Rep. Kuster. “These resources, made available through the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, bring vital funding for mental health and harm reduction services that will help our communities respond to and reduce crime and violence so that our teachers and students can focus on what matters most at school – learning, playing, and growing safely.”

“Ensuring our children are safe in schools must be a top priority, and this funding will support school safety in New Hampshire communities by increasing prevention efforts, mental health resources, and support for our local law enforcement,” said Rep. Chris Pappas. “I’m pleased to see these funds delivered to New Hampshire to support this important work, and I’ll continue fighting to secure resources that help keep our kids safe.”

Funds were allocated to the following projects:

  • $1 million to the city of Laconia for their “Building Bridges for Safe Schools” project, which aims to foster a positive school climate across the Laconia School District by increasing access to violence prevention and mental health resources.
  • $999,618 to the city of Manchester for their project “Establishing Multidisciplinary Behavioral Threat Assessment and Intervention Teams.” This project aims to reduce violence in Manchester’s schools through the establishment of behavioral threat assessment and intervention “School Safety” teams.
  • $537,124 to Manchester Police Department to implement an investigative checklist strategy via mobile phone application.

Senators Shaheen and Hassan have long supported efforts to expand mental health services and curb violence in New Hampshire schools and communities. Senators Shaheen and Hassan were key supporters of the landmark Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which provided $2 billion for school-based mental health and to support safe and healthy learning environments. In the FY 2023 government funding legislation, Senator Shaheen successfully secured $231 million for grant programs that improve police-community relations. This is an increase of $30 million, or 15 percent, above the enacted FY 2022 funding level and will support programs for law enforcement officer training on de-escalation, implicit bias and crisis intervention, as well as hate crime prevention and community violence intervention programs.