Crime Victim Services Newsletter
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Expanding Services and Empowering Victims Initiative

The Federal Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) provided states with a significant increase in funding this year for crime victim services. Ohio received $69,888,068 in VOCA funding this year, quadrupling the amount of grant funding that is typically received. The Ohio Attorney General’s Office (AGO) developed a three-part plan to ensure that the funds were used effectively. The AGO created the Expanding Services and Empowering Victims Initiative to determine how the additional money should be spent.

First, the AGO provided additional money to agencies already funded by VOCA. These extra funds are helping these agencies to provide basic services to victims, raises to employees, maintenance of buildings, or upgrades to technology to more effectively focus on the needs of their particular clients. The AGO will now be able to fund more than 300. 

Second, the AGO is identifying and funding those agencies that have new and innovative ideas about how to better serve victims, especially agencies addressing more vulnerable populations. After extensive research, the AGO determined that four areas need funding from the remaining money: domestic violence, sexual assault, at-risk youth, and access to justice. Eight grants have been created to fund agencies focusing on these areas. The agencies were told to “dream big” to help those in need and now they can do just that.

With the additional funds, CVS is working to identify additional programs and special projects that will benefit victims of crime, particularly underserved populations. Additional grant announcements will be made in the future.