The Lake County Gun Violence Prevention Initiative (GVPI) partners with community and law enforcement to address the root causes of gun violence, and implement proven short-term and long-term strategies, to immediately interrupt cycles of gun violence.
The GVPI was announced in 2021 with the support of the Mayors of Waukegan, Zion, and North Chicago as a new approach to addressing rising gun violence. The GVPI funds the data driven and proven approach of putting teams of violence interrupters in targeted areas, which began in 2022.
Violence Interrupters (VIs) are street-level staff who will work with high-risk individuals to help prevent gun violence before it happens. They will be hired for their credibility, relationships, and influence within the targeted communities and trained to resolve conflict. They will meet the high-risk individuals where they are and implement unique risk reduction plans that will help put them on the right path, away from gun violence.
In 2021, our office secured funding for the Violent Crimes Unit, which our most experienced prosecutors to immediately collaborate with police agencies on the most serious cases. The GVPI’s work is to prevent those incidents from happening and prevent the cycle of retaliation and it was possible because of the substantial investment by the Lake County Board through federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds and the State of Illinois through budget allocation.