Justice Department awards over $300,000 to the Southern Ute Indian Tribe

Funds to support Native American crime victims

The Office of Justice Programs’ Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) awarded over $391,425 to the Southern Ute Indian Tribe as part of a larger effort to assist victims of crime, announced U.S. Attorney Jason Dunn.  The Southern Ute grant is part of more than $5.7 million to support crime victims in Native American communities nationwide.  This set of awards is the second in a series of grants being made by OVC to American Indian and Alaska Native communities. OVC has now awarded more than $9 million of a planned $100 million to support tribal victim service programs.

The Southern Ute Indian Tribe received $391,425 to expand its victim services program by providing direct victim services and trauma-informed personnel support. The funding will pay for supplies, staff training, the purchase of new equipment for forensic medical services and child forensic interviews and clinical therapeutic services for crime victims.

“I recently travelled to the Southern Ute Indian Reservation and saw firsthand how much they’ve accomplished in helping victims of crime,” Dunn said.  “I also know that a grant, like this one, can provide a huge benefit to crime prevention and victim protection.”

“American Indian and Alaska Native communities face extensive public safety challenges, but through creative approaches that combine traditional methods with innovative solutions, they are demonstrating their determination to meet the needs of victims in their communities,” said Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Matt M. Dummermuth. “These grants, part of historic levels of funding awarded by the Department of Justice to American Indian and Alaska Native communities, will provide significant resources to bring critical services to those who suffer the effects of crime and violence.”

The Justice Department is working to improve the lives of all crime victims, including American Indian and Alaska Native communities, by providing accessible resources and services. These awards, and those to come, represent the most significant victim services funding ever dispersed to American Indian and Alaska Native communities.

According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, American Indians and Alaska Natives experience violent crimes at rates far greater than the general population.

“American Indian and Alaska Native crime victims continue to face challenges in identifying vital services and resources needed to help survivors address their trauma and navigate a complex system,” said OVC Director Darlene Hutchinson. “The Justice Department has made it a priority to partner with tribes to help victims and their families rebuild their lives in the aftermath of violence.”

The Office of Justice Programs, directed Dummermuth, provides federal leadership to improve the nation’s capacity to prevent and reduce crime, assist victims, and enhance the rule of law by strengthening the criminal justice system. OJP has six bureaus and offices: The Bureau of Justice Assistance; the Bureau of Justice Statistics; the National Institute of Justice; the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; the Office for Victims of Crime; and the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering and Tracking. More information about OJP and its components can be found at www.ojp.gov.

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