Texas Southern University’s Center for Justice Research has received a $351,000 grant from the Walmart Foundation through the Walmart.org Center for Racial Equity to form the HBCU Criminal Justice Research Hub. The Hub will facilitate a two-year collaboration between HBCU researchers, community organizations, and community members working toward reducing mass incarceration and violent crime.
“The Walmart Foundation grant will open up new opportunities for collaboration, strengthening our partnerships here in Houston while widening our reach and impact across other U.S. cities and crime-impacted communities,” commented Dr. Howard Henderson, Director of the Center for Justice Research. “Community input will be vital to this work, and Hub meetings will necessarily involve community members with lived experience of the impacts of violent crime and mass incarceration.”
The Criminal Justice Research Hub is part of a broader network of community leaders, nonprofits and policymakers working together to advance criminal justice prevention initiatives, made possible by the Walmart.org Center for Racial Equity.
“We must be more intentional about creating meaningful opportunities for young people at the highest risk of becoming justice-involved and providing resources to communities that will help to break the cycle of incarceration for Black young adults,” said Dr. Marvin Carr, Director, Walmart.org Center for Racial Equity. “We’re excited to support Texas Southern as they launch the HBCU Criminal Justice Research Hub to further this work.”
The Hub will leverage the strength of these collaborations to work toward solutions to rising violent crime rates. Hub researchers will also conduct need assessments in Houston and researchers’ respective cities to determine culturally responsive, data-driven interventions and policy solutions.
“Texas Southern University is committed to finding solutions for urban issues through our outstanding faculty researchers, including the team in the Center for Justice Research,” said Dr. Lesia L. Crumpton-Young, Texas Southern University President. “CJR plays a critical role in community-based criminal justice reform efforts and advocacy. We thank the Walmart Foundation for this gift that will enhance their efforts and assist the university and our community as we continue on our path to Carnegie R1 research status.”
The Hub will also focus on researcher development, incorporating the Center’s Researcher Development and Training Institute and focusing on cultivating a diverse cohort of criminal justice researchers and social engineers.
“CJR’s work continues to support and diversify the field of criminal justice researchers by providing opportunities to engage in solutions-oriented projects in the community,” Dr. George Kieh, Dean of the Barbara Jordan–Mickey Leland School of Public Affairs said.
The HBCU Criminal Justice Research Hub aims to expand the capacity of HBCUs to provide solutions for the crime and incarceration problems facing communities around the country and seeks to address the root causes of mass incarceration and violent crime.
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Center for Justice Research