Deadline extended for Toledo criminal justice reform funding

Published: Jul. 18, 2022 at 12:37 PM EDT
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - The Lucas County Commissioners announced it has extended the deadline for organizations to apply for grant money to support criminal justice reform initiatives.

Community-based groups working toward criminal justice reform by addressing racial disparities in local jails can now apply for grants up to $10,000 by noon on July 22, 2022. Organizations will be notified by August 16 if their funding has been approved.

A statement from the county commissioners said the funding will go to groups focusing on criminal justice reform through policy change, community engagement, or programming in the 43604, 43607, 43608, and 43610 zip codes in Toledo.

The money comes from the county’s partnership with the MacArthur Foundation Safety + Justice Challenge.

Applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Applicant must have valid 501(c)(3) nonprofit status, or partner with a nonprofit organization that can serve as a fiscal sponsor.
  • Applicant must file a grant funding report.

Applicants can submit a proposal here or by mailing/dropping off the proposal to the Lucas County Commissioners at Government Center Suite 800, Toledo, Ohio 43604.

Find more information on the Safety + Justice Challenge here.

More information from the Lucas County Commissioners can be found below.

“Lucas County was first selected to join the MacArthur Foundation Safety + Justice Challenge Network in 2015 and has used the resources and funding provided by the initiative to implement evidence-based solutions and strategies to rethink and redesign its criminal justice system to be more fair, just, and equitable for all. These strategies include the formation of a Community Engagement Workgroup in 2020 to focus on engaging local community members and anchor institutions in targeted neighborhoods to provide insight and guidance on criminal justice reform strategies, including ways to advance racial equity. Over 40 community members and residents participated in the listening sessions, which served as a foundation for the Commissioners to launch the grant fund. As part of the MacArthur Foundation Safety + Justice Challenge, Lucas County has undertaken the following strategies: increased training for criminal justice system actors to focus on procedural justice, implicit bias, crisis intervention, and de-escalation; routine population review to identify people whose cases can be resolved or can be released from jail without risk to the public; expedited case processing; the Toledo Municipal Court diversion program to target individuals who have mental health or substance use issues and provide them with alternatives to jail; collaboration among the county’s five probation departments to share evidence-informed practices and coordinate trainings; and the Opportunity Project, which embeds social workers in the public defender’s office to interview clients at their first court appearance and connect them with social services upon release. Since joining the MacArthur Foundation’s Safety + Justice Challenge in 2015, Lucas County has advanced local criminal justice reform and reduced the local jail population by 42 percent while maintaining public safety. To date, Lucas County has received $4.6 million as part of the Safety and Justice Challenge.”

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