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Department of Justice Invests More than $295.8 Million in Grants to Improve Public Safety, Serve Crime Victims in American Indian and Alaska Native Communities

Gerald Scroop

September 30, 2020

The Department of Justice today announced it has awarded more than $295.8 million to improve public safety, serve victims of crime and support youth programs in American Indian and Alaska Native communities.

“American Indian and Alaska Native communities experience rates of violent crime and domestic abuse that are among the highest in the nation,” said Attorney General William P. Barr. “The awards announced today underscore the Department of Justice’s deep commitment to improving public safety in tribal communities throughout the United States. This administration will continue to work closely with our tribal partners to guarantee that they have the resources they need to combat violence and bring criminals to justice.”

More than $103 million was awarded under the Justice Department’s Coordinated Tribal Assistance Solicitation (CTAS) to enhance law enforcement and tribal justice practices, expand victim services and sustain crime prevention and intervention efforts. CTAS grants are administered by the department’s Office of Justice Programs ($41.5 million), Office on Violence Against Women ($39.1 million) and Office of Community Oriented Policing Services ($22.5 million).

“Public safety officials and victim service providers in Indian country face exceptional challenges, but they bring to their work an extraordinary array of skills and resources that enable them to meet and overcome any obstacle,” said OJP Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Katharine T. Sullivan. “The Office of Justice Programs is proud to help fulfill Attorney General Barr’s strong commitment – and the federal government’s long-standing responsibility – to our tribal partners in the matter of their citizens’ safety and wellbeing.”

“OVW’s funding supports Native American and Alaska Native communities as they work across their communities to prevent and respond to gender based violence,” said Office on Violence Against Women Principal Deputy Director Laura L. Rogers. “These awards represent the strong commitment that OVW has made to help protect the most vulnerable members of tribal communities.”

“Ensuring our nation’s tribal communities have the resources they need is paramount for the COPS Office and the Department of Justice,” said COPS Office Director Phil Keith. “These awards are a critical component to the overall public safety strategy for tribal law enforcement and the COPS Office is honored to provide vital resources to hire more sworn officer positions, advance tribal training and procure equipment needed to keep communities safe.”

An additional $113 million was awarded to 133 applicants under the Tribal Victim Services Set-Aside Program. This program, managed by OJP’s Office for Victims of Crime (OVC), is designed to help tribes develop, expand and improve services to victims of crime and promote other public safety initiatives.

In addition to the CTAS and Tribal Victim Services Set-Aside awards, the Office on Violence Against Women made additional tribal awards of more than $31 million to support a wide range of efforts to address the crimes of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, stalking and human trafficking.

Additional awards to support tribal public safety efforts were made by OJP and the COPS Office. OJP’s Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) made six awards totaling more than $3.4 million to provide training and technical assistance to federally-recognized tribes and villages. OVC awarded more than $2.2 million to tribes to develop a workforce of direct victim service providers for American Indian and Alaska Native victims of crime in hard-to-staff positions and locations. OJP’s Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention awarded $16.1 million to address the needs of tribal youth, and its Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, and Tracking awarded nearly $7 million to implement the sex offender registration and notification provisions of the Adam Walsh Act.

BJA also awarded almost $1.9 million to 17 tribal communities to address the public safety challenges posed by the outbreak of COVID-19. Funding was made available from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act signed by President Trump in March. In addition, BJA awarded over $9.4 million to combat substance abuse in tribal communities, almost $4.3 million to help tribes reintegrate ex-offenders into their communities and $435,843 to tribal jurisdictions under the Justice Assistance Grant Program.

OJP’s National Institute of Justice made one award totaling $99,637 to fund tribal research to address the challenges of fighting crime and strengthening justice in Indian country and Alaska Native villages. The COPS office awarded nearly $800,000 to support tribal law enforcement agencies through training and technical assistance around community policing efforts.

A full listing of all the announced CTAS awards is available here.

A full listing of all Tribal Victim Services Set-Aside Program awards is available here.

For more information on the Office of Justice Programs, please visit: https://www.ojp.gov/. For more information on the Office on Violence Against Women, please visit: https://www.justice.gov/ovw. For more information on the COPS Office, please visit: https://cops.usdoj.gov/

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