FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEVAWO
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 28, 1999202/307-0703

JUSTICE DEPARTMENT AWARDS $3.2 MILLION TO COMMUNITIES

FOR SEX OFFENDER MANAGEMENT

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Twenty-eight state, local and tribal jurisdictions will be better able to monitor sex offenders who are released from prisons into their communities as a result of $3.2 million in grant funding announced today by the Justice Department. This is the first year that communities will receive grants under the Comprehensive Approaches to Sex Offender Management Program, administered by the Department's Violence Against Women Office (VAWO).

"One of the issues facing communities is the return of sex offenders following their release from incarceration," said Attorney General Janet Reno. "These funds will help enable many parts of the system to work together to develop and implement programs to effectively supervise offenders and counsel victims."

Fifteen of the 28 awards are planning grants to assist jurisdictions in developing comprehensive, collaborative approaches to managing sex offenders. The remaining 13 grants will help communities implement such strategies or enhance current programs.

"We know that about 234,000 convicted sex offenders are under the care, custody or control of corrections agencies on an average day, and nearly 60 percent are under conditional supervision in the community," said Laurie Robinson, Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Justice Programs (OJP), which includes VAWO. "We must develop ways to better manage these offenders, so they can live in communities without posing a danger to other community members."

Grant funds will be used to develop teams of representatives from law enforcement, prosecution, courts, corrections, probation, social services and victim organizations to identify strengths and weaknesses in sex offender management systems and assess the staff and equipment necessary to identify, track and treat sex offenders. Planning funds will also be used to gauge the need for training probation officers and other criminal justice personnel, treatment providers and victim advocates about sex offender management.

"The program involves victim advocacy organizations in the development of policies that guide probation and parole agencies' management of sex offenders," said Bonnie Campbell, Director of VAWO. "Victims play a key role not only in holding offenders accountable, but also in finding ways to help themselves and the community heal."

Connecticut will use its funds to hire a victim advocate and a relapse prevention officer to enhance the New London Sex Offender Unit. In Clark County, Nevada, the Department of Family and Youth Services will develop specialized services for juvenile sex offenders, including year-round supervision, community residential treatment and education programs.

Iowa's Department of Correctional Services will use its grant funds to enhance accountability of sex offenders through home visits and surveillance by department staff and provide treatment and counseling to offenders and victims.

The Washington State Department of Corrections will use its grant funds to support local multidisciplinary teams to address the re-entry of sex offenders into the community. They will develop strategic plans to ensure adequate community support services, prepare the community and decrease recidivism among offenders.

In Fiscal Year 1999, Congress appropriated $5 million for sex offender management initiatives. Three million was set aside for the Comprehensive Approaches to Sex Offender Management Grants. VAWO received 65 applications requesting $9.3 million and is awarding 28 grants totaling $3.2 million based on decisions guided by a peer-review process. Remaining funds will be used for training and technical assistance for the grantees and other interested jurisdictions across the country and will be administered by the Center for Sex Offender Management in Silver Spring, Maryland.

Attached is a list of the specific grant awards, identified as either planning or implementation/enhancement grants. More information about the sex offender management program and violence against women efforts can be found at VAWO's Website at www.ojp.usdoj.gov/VAWGO or OJP's Website at www.ojp.usdoj.gov, or by calling the National Criminal Justice Reference Service toll-free on 1-800/851-3420.

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VAW99196

After hours contact: Linda Mansour on 202/616-3534 or page on 202/516-6843

STATE

JURISDICTION

GRANTEE

AMOUNT

ARKANSAS Little Rock University of Arkansas

$49,862

CALIFORNIA San Diego San Diego County Probation Department

$50,000

San Luis Obispo San Luis Obispo County Probation

$49,948

IDAHO Boise Idaho Department of Juvenile Corrections

$49,862

MARYLAND Baltimore Baltimore City Division of Probation and Parole

$49,951

NEW JERSEY Trenton New Jersey Department of Corrections

$43,883

NEW YORK New York City of New York

$50,000

Oswego Oswego County Probation Department

$49,908

Kingston Ulster County Probation Department

$44,255

OHIO Cleveland Cuyahoga County Board of Commissioners

$50,000

Dayton Montgomery County Board of County Commissioners

$47,780

RHODE ISLAND Providence Rhode Island Governor's Justice Commission

$37,670

SOUTH DAKOTA Marty Yankton Sioux Tribe

$50,000

WEST VIRGINIA Charleston West Virginia Division of Corrections

$50,000

WISCONSIN Oneida Oneida Tribe of Indians

$50,000

TOTAL

15

15

$723,119

OFFICE OF JUSTICE PROGRAMS

COMPREHENSIVE APPROACHES TO

SEX OFFENDER MANAGEMENT GRANT PROGRAM

FY 1999 IMPLEMENTATION/ENHANCEMENT GRANTS

STATE

JURISDICTION

GRANTEE

AMOUNT

COLORADO Golden Jefferson County

$182,198

CONNECTICUT Hartford Office of Planning and Management

$249,274

IOWA Des Moines Iowa Fifth Judicial District's Department of Correctional Services

$216,081

NEVADA Las Vegas Clark County Department of Family and Youth Services

$225,000

STATE

JURISDICTION

GRANTEE

AMOUNT

NEW YORK White Plains Westchester County Probation Department

$250,000

OHIO Columbus Franklin County Court of Common Pleas

$181,597

OREGON Grants Pass Josephine County Community Corrections

$173,490

Portland Multnomah County Department of Community Justice

$249,937

SOUTH CAROLINA Columbia South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice

$136,973

TEXAS Houston Harris County Judicial District Community Supervision and Corrections

$72,800

VERMONT Waterbury State of Vermont Department of Corrections

$185,505

WASHINGTON Olympia Washington Department of Corrections

$124,939

WISCONSIN Milwaukee Milwaukee County Mental Health Division

$248,236

TOTAL

13

13

$2,496,030

October 1999