Washington, DC - The Office for Victims of Crime (OVC), a component of the Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP), has awarded nearly $104 million to serve victims in tribal communities, of which nearly $101 million was awarded through the Crime Victims Fund Tribal Victim Services Set-Aside.
More than 140 awards were made through the Tribal Victim Services Set-Aside formula program to fund culturally-appropriate victim services to meet the needs of Tribal communities.
“American Indian and Alaska Native crime victims deserve the same access to services and the same level of support available to survivors in other communities,” said Associate Attorney General Vanita Gupta. “This administration, and this Department of Justice, are committed to fully discharging our responsibilities to Indian nations, especially to those who have experienced the pain and loss that follow victimization. These funds will help establish, expand and enhance services that are vital to recovery and healing.”
The funds can be used for many victim services purposes, including the development, enhancement and implementation of programs; strategic planning; and needs assessments. Funds may also be used to offer shelter and transitional housing services; crisis abuse intervention; legal services; medical and dental care; mental health care; transportation; and education and employment readiness.
“American Indians and Alaska Natives experience crime and victimization at disproportionate rates, and they are often unable to access the services they need to begin the road to healing,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Amy L. Solomon of the Justice Department’s Office of Justice Programs. “These awards will support service providers as they undertake the critical work of helping survivors meet basic material and emotional needs and rediscover hope in the wake of tragedy.”
Under the Set-Aside, OVC is:
- Supporting Tribal grantees with capacity building, training and technical assistance ($6.8 million) through the Tribal Set-Aside Training and Technical Assistance Program, the Tribal Financial Management Center and the Human Trafficking Capacity Building Center;
- Updating the Tribal Resource Tool ($199,999) which maps the availability of victim services in Tribal communities;
- Contributing to the Tribal Access Program ($420,000);
- Conducting the next National Indian Nations Conference ($680,796);
- Transferring funding to the Bureau of Indian Affairs to support the Federal Crime Victim Assistance Fund ($30,000) and Victim Specialist positions (more than $1.7 million); and
- Providing funding to the Bureau of Justice Assistance to support Coordinated Tribal Assistance Solicitation Purpose Area 2 ($250,000) and Tribal construction contracts ($251,332).
In addition to funds available to support Tribal communities under the Set-Aside, the remaining $3 million will be awarded under the Children’s Justice Act Partnership to Tribes to respond to cases involving criminal child abuse and neglect.
The Crime Victims Fund was established by the Victims of Crime Act of 1984. It is financed, not by tax dollars, but from criminal fines, forfeited bail bonds, penalty fees and special assessment fees collected by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices, U.S. Courts and the Bureau of Prisons.