Jul 11 2003

North Charleston, Spartanburg Receive $225,000 Crime-Fighting Grants

WASHINGTON -- U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today announced the U.S. Department of Justice has awarded $225,000 grants to North Charleston and Spartanburg to support the Weed and Seed programs in each city. Weed and Seed is a strategy which aims to prevent, control, and reduce violent crime, drug abuse, and gang activity in targeted high-crime neighborhoods. The strategy involves a two-pronged approach: law enforcement agencies and prosecutors cooperate in ‘weeding out’ criminals who participate in violent crime and drug abuse, attempting to prevent their return to the targeted area; and ‘seeding’ brings human services to the area, encompassing prevention, intervention, treatment, and neighborhood revitalization. North Charleston: This is the third award for North Charleston program which serves four neighborhoods in the city. During this project period, program goals include participating in Operation Cease Fire with the U.S. Attorney’s Office; facilitating interaction and cooperation between the police and residents; focusing on youth education and family development efforts to assist children at a high risk for neglect, focusing on beautification efforts and the removal of blight from the area. Spartanburg: This is the second award for the Spartanburg program which serves the Arkwright and Forest Park areas of the city. During this project period, program goals include addressing youth gang activities and eliminating crime associated with gang organizations; coordinating neighborhood watch meetings; increasing parental involvement, improving educational performance, and bringing affordable health and human services to the area; and encouraging resident involvement in improving economic viability and preserving the residential housing stock of the neighborhood. “We need to ensure all our neighborhoods are safe from crime and drug abuse,” said Graham. “The programs funded through these grants take a unique approach to achieving that goal.” ####