The state of Florida will spend nearly $85 million for crime prevention programs. Gov. Rick Scott announced funding for five programs Monday under the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice.
“Thanks to the dedication of our law enforcement officers and the great youth service providers across the state, Florida’s juvenile arrests are at their lowest levels in 30 years,” Scott said. “We are proud to invest nearly $85 million this year to improve the lives of Florida’s youth. By working together, we can continue to ensure that every child in Florida is given the opportunity to achieve their dreams.”
The biggest chunk of the funding will go to the PACE Center for Girls to provide increased opportunities for young women to receive a quality education and have better access to counseling and advocacy.
“PACE Center for Girls is proud of the partnership we have with the governor and Legislature. Our program has transformed the lives of more than 37,000 middle and high school aged girls in Florida who were deemed at-risk for juvenile delinquency,” said Mary Marx, president and CEO of the PACE Center for Girls. “Our impact and our results are sustainable and we have the governor and Legislature to thank for making it possible.”
Another $5.5 million is going to the Boys and Girls Clubs to provide opportunities for young people in the state. AMIKids, a group that provides programs to teach youth skills to provide a brighter future, will be funded with $2.5 million.
“I want to thank Governor Scott and the Florida Legislature for their leadership in recognizing the necessity for early intervention and prevention services for the youth in our state. The “KEEP FLORIDA WORKING” budget underscores the importance of keeping our kids out of the juvenile justice system, thus allowing them to achieve their full potential and setting them on the path toward a better and brighter future,” Department of Juvenile Justice Secretary Christina Daly said, referring to the $2.1 million that funds the “Keep Florida Working” program.
Other funding levels include $250,000 to Parenting and Love and Limits, a group that focuses on intervention with at-risk youth, and Kinder Vision/The Greatest Save. That group will receive $150,000 to further work on educational materials for middle and high school students to understand the risk associated with sexual predators.