LANSING, Sept. 22, 2021 — The Advance Peace Peacemaker Fellowship, Ingham County’s and the city of Lansing’s joint effort to curb gun violence, will receive $357,000 under the new state budget that passed the House today.

“We need to act quickly to protect our young people and break the cycle of gun violence. This community-based approach has a track record of doing just that,” said State Rep. Kara Hope (D-Holt). “It was important to me to advocate for this funding. I have no doubt that this program will save lives and strengthen our community.”

Advance Peace’s mission is to reduce gun violence in urban areas. Their work uses a community-based public health approach, focusing on individuals who are at risk for future violence. The county and city will fund most of the three-year project, whose total cost is nearly $2 million. This $357,000 investment from the state will close the current funding gap.

“Greater Lansing Area Moms Demand Action salutes Kara Hope and Sarah Anthony for their leadership in securing state funding for the Advance Peace Peacemaker Fellowship,” said Katie See, local team lead for Greater Lansing Area Moms Demand Action. “Persistent gun violence in Lansing has imposed a devastating toll on our community. The legislature’s budgetary support for Advance Peace signals the state of Michigan’s commitment to address gun violence as a crisis of public health, community safety, neighborhood stability and economic well-being. We welcome and endorse this commitment.”  

The Advance Peace Peacemaker Fellowship Program enrolls individuals involved in violent firearm offenses in an intensive program that works to make these individuals mentors in their community. With a goal of breaking the cycle of violence, the program boasts a 50% decrease in firearm assaults.

“This is an issue that’s been weighing heavily on my mind and heart for a few months now, and I know I’m not the only one,” said state Rep. Sarah Anthony (D-Lansing). “Hopefully the funding allocated for Advance Peace will provide a slight glimmer of hope for victims, their families and everyone else in our community who has been impacted by the uptick in gun violence this year.”

“The Ingham County Board of Commissioners are thankful to Representatives Hope and Anthony for pushing to have this funding included in the budget,” Ingham County Board of Commissioners Chairperson Bryan Crenshaw said. “This additional funding, in addition to what has been committed by Ingham County and the city of Lansing, will help the Advance Peace Street Outreach and Peacemaker Fellowship Gun Violence Program maximize efforts to reduce gun violence in Ingham County.”