After reports that hate crimes have tripled in Pennsylvania, the commonwealth is offering vulnerable nonprofits some help to beef up their security.
PENNSYLVANIA STATE | On Oct. 3, 2022, Governor Tom Wolf announced $5 million in grants for nonprofit organizations helping communities targeted by hate crimes. This initiative is part of the Nonprofit Security Program, signed into law after the 2018 Pittsburgh Tree of Life synagogue shooting, where 11 people were murdered. The money will be available for churches, synagogues, temples, mosques, and other nonprofit organizations subject to hate crimes to enhance their physical security.
Pennsylvania saw a 210% increase in hate crimes in 2021, when the number increased to 347 crimes from 112 in 2020. Pennsylvania averaged 88 hate crimes annually from 2016-2019. 182 hate crimes have been reported throughout the commonwealth so far this year. However, the U.S. Department of Justice estimates nearly two-thirds of hate crimes go unreported.
“Hate has no place here in Pennsylvania,” said Gov. Wolf. “No Pennsylvanian should be afraid to worship with their community, love who they love, or be who they are – that’s why this program is so important to me and I’ve committed $20 million to protecting the diverse communities of this commonwealth.”
The Pennsylvania Commission administers the Nonprofit Security Grant Program on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD). Interested organizations can apply for $5,000 to $150,000 in grants for safety and security planning and training, purchasing safety and security equipment and technology, upgrading existing structures that enhance safety and security, and vulnerability and threat assessments. PCCD will accept applications through Monday, Oct. 31, 2022. Awards will be announced in Dec. 2022. Learn more about hate crimes in the FBI’s Hate Crime Statistics publication.