The President has allocated $350 million to cities across the country to counter the crime wave, which has increased significantly during the pandemic.
The White House said that as part of the new initiative, the Department of Justice ordered federal prosecutors across the country to “increase resources allocated to a strategy to combat violent crimes in specific counties to remove repeat offenders who commit violent acts with firearms from our streets.”
Biden said that law enforcement agencies were ordered to pay special attention to the so-called “iron pipeline” – the illegal flow of weapons sold in the southern U.S. states and then transported to the East Coast. Subsequently, such weapons are most often found at crime scenes in cities such as New York.
The current administration has launched a nationwide initiative to combat homemade weapons, under which prosecutors will initiate cases against gun manufacturers without serial numbers or other identification, as well as track unlicensed dealers who sell weapons to criminals without the necessary background checks.
Biden’s visit to New York was also intended to dispel criticism from Republicans that the Democratic president is not tough enough to fight crime. Biden rejected the call to “stop funding the police,” promoted by some left-wing progressive Democrats.
“We’re not talking about stopping funding,” Biden said. – We are engaged in financing and providing additional services… We need more social workers. We need more mental health professionals.”
During a visit to New York, Biden and Attorney General Merrick Garland attended an interagency meeting on gun violence, which was also attended by Mayor Adams and New York State Governor Kathy Hochul. The President and the Prosecutor General talked with local leaders about the efforts made by communities to prevent crimes.
Adams, who took office at the beginning of the year, published his own plan to combat gun violence, many of the points of which are similar to the initiatives of the White House, including combating illegal gun trafficking, increasing youth employment and strengthening funding for mental health services.
“We must do everything possible to put an end to this epidemic of gun violence and ensure real peace and security on our streets,” Adams tweeted on Wednesday, commenting on another case where police officers become victims of criminals with firearms. Two New York City police officers were killed in shootings last month.