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Friday, May 20th, 2022

Sen. Peters calls for increased funding to help protect houses of worship from threats

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U.S. Sen. Gary Peters (D-MI), chair of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, led a group of lawmakers in calling for funding to meet the needs of houses of worship to secure their facilities against potential terrorist attacks.

In a letter to the leaders of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Peters and his colleagues call for the Nonprofit Security Grant Program (NSGP) to be fully funded so that houses of worship and other nonprofit organizations who wish to secure their facilities could do so. The letter comes after a violent attack in Colleyville, Texas, against a Jewish Community.

“The Nonprofit Security Grant Program is a critical resource for houses of worship that want to protect against potential threats. The recent tragic attack against a synagogue in Colleyville, Texas is just the latest example of why this program needs robust funding,” Peters said. “No American should fear for their safety when practicing their faith. That is why I have long fought to increase funding for this vital program so that houses of worship, cultural institutions, and nonprofit organizations in Michigan and across the nation can improve their security and provide a safe haven for their congregations, especially in the wake of rising anti-Semitic and other faith-based attacks that continue to terrorize communities.”

The NSGP provides grants to at-risk nonprofits to help them plan for and safeguard their facilities against attacks. Grant funding can be used to harden facilities, promote emergency preparedness training, and strengthen security coordination between communities, emergency responders, and state and local government agencies. Last year, nearly $3.5 million was given to nonprofits and faith-based organizations across Michigan to help secure facilities against attacks.