Congressman Cohen Reiterates Support for Gun Violence Plan as Memphis Police Chief Davis Confers with President Biden
MEMPHIS – Congressman Steve Cohen, a senior member of the Judiciary Committee, today expressed his support for the Biden Administration’s gun violence strategy and its work with Memphis Police Chief Cerelyn “CJ” Davis. Davis was among several municipal officials who met with Biden at the White House on Monday to discuss use of $350 million in American Rescue Plan funding dedicated to implementing proven violence-prevention policies.
Congressman Cohen made the following statement:
“I am pleased to see President Biden, Vice President Harris, Attorney General Merrick Garland and other Biden Administration officials including Memphis and its approach to violent crime as an example to the nation. Chief Davis, though new to the top job, has a proven record and can help national policy makers implement proven techniques. I have long supported Community-Oriented Policing strategies and Community Intervention Programs, as well as proven programs so formerly incarcerated individuals can effectively reenter society. I will continue to support the Memphis Police Department and Chief Davis in Washington by focusing federal resources on equitable, evidence-based public safety programs.”
In June, President Biden unveiled a comprehensive strategy to combat gun violence. This strategy attacks the root causes of gun violence and includes proven preventative measures designed to reduce violent crime such as investing in effective community policing and addressing the flow of firearms used to commit crimes.
Memphis city and local enforcement leaders have announced plans to use American Rescue Plan funding for hiring and training more officers, paying for much-needed overtime for officers, youth programs, the hiring and training of additional people to work in violence intervention and funding for social efforts to help people leave criminal lifestyles. The city will also invest in wraparound services for at risk individuals. Memphis is also part of the White House’s new Community Violence Initiative (CVI) Collaborative.
The core of the President’s plan is a partnership with cities and states, equipping local leaders with historic levels of federal funding and a range of tools to address the multifaceted challenge of gun violence. In particular, the strategy uses the American Rescue Plan’s $350 billion in financial support and clear guidance to provide state, local, territorial, and tribal governments the money they need to keep our communities safe. These funds can also be used to support evidence-based community violence intervention programs, summer employment and educational opportunities, and other investments that are known to reduce crime and make neighborhoods safer.
Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser, San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo, Newark Police Lieutenant Anthony Lima and Chicago Police Chief David Brown, among others, also attended the session at the White House today.