DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE AWARDED MORE THAN $735 MILLION IN FY 2009 FOR PROGRAMS TO AID CRIME VICTIMS
WASHINGTON, DC – The Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP) today announced that in Fiscal Year 2009 more than $735 million was awarded to serve victims of crime, including $100 million that was awarded in Recovery Act funding. More than $545 million of the $735 million in total funding was awarded as formula grants to state and local victim assistance and compensation programs as required by the Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) signed into law on October 12, 1984. This year marks the 25th anniversary of VOCA.
All of the Fiscal Year 2009 VOCA funding comes from the Crime Victims Fund overseen by OJP’s Office for Victims of Crime (OVC). The fund is comprised of fines, penalty assessments, and bail forfeitures collected from convicted federal criminals and supports victim compensation programs that provide reimbursement to crime victims and their families for crime-related expenses such as medical costs, mental health counseling, funeral and burial costs, and lost wages. The Crime Victims Fund also enables state victim assistance programs to support local efforts such as crisis intervention, counseling, emergency shelter, and criminal justice system advocacy. The Department’s Fiscal Year 2009 funding also supported victim witness coordinators in U.S. Attorneys offices, victim assistance specialists in the FBI, and the federal Victim Notification System.
The Department also awarded $95 million in Recovery Act formula grants to VOCA assistance and compensation programs. An additional $5 million in Recovery Act funds was awarded for training and technical assistance and demonstration projects related to serving crime victims.
More information about OVC, its resources for crime victims, and its funding for victim assistance and compensation programs is available at: http://www.ovc.gov/.
The Office of Justice Programs, headed by Acting Assistant Attorney General Mary Lou Leary, provides federal leadership in developing the nation's capacity to prevent and control crime, administer justice, and assist victims. OJP has five component bureaus: the Bureau of Justice Assistance; the Bureau of Justice Statistics; the National Institute of Justice; the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; and the Office for Victims of Crime. Additionally, OJP has two program offices: the Community Capacity Development Office, which incorporates the Weed and Seed strategy, and the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking (SMART). More information can be found at http://www.ojp.gov.