Governor Andrew Cuomo says $16 million in funding is being made available for workforce training and job placement programs in 20 cities most impacted by gun violence.

The City of Utica will get $600,000 to serve 120 youth.

The effort is part of Cuomo’s first-in-the-nation gun violence disaster emergency and comprehensive strategy to build a safer New York.

The initiative treats gun violence as a public health crisis and includes short-term solutions as well as long-term strategies that focus on community-based intervention and prevention.

"Gun violence is a public health crisis, in New York State and across the country, and we're attacking it with the same comprehensive, evidence-based approach we used to beat COVID. We know that simply telling kids to put the gun down doesn't work—we have to give them an alternative," Governor Cuomo said. "This new funding, for job training and stable, good-paying career placement opportunities for our most vulnerable young people across New York State, does just that. It's an investment in our economy, in our recovery, and in our security. And it's a beacon of hope for a generation that too often feels bereft of it."

Cuomo says under the new initiative, the New York State Department of Labor will partner will partner with local workforce development boards and community partners to connect at-risk youth with good paying, permanent jobs.

This builds on $12 million the Governor announced on July 14 to provide 2,400 jobs to young workers in New York City.

The new investment brings New York State's total commitment to reducing gun violence to $154.7 million.

The governor has been hosting gun violence community meetings across the state this week.

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