The Office of Justice Programs (OJP) today announced that it has awarded $261 million in grant awards to support mentoring services for youth and to protect children from abuse, exploitation and threats such as sex trafficking. Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Katharine T. Sullivan made the announcement at an event with leaders and representatives of the Cal Ripken Sr. Foundation and local chapters of the Police Athletic League, along with local police chiefs.
“Young people in America face an array of challenges, from social and academic pressures to dangerous predators and lethal drugs. They are better equipped to meet those challenges with a model of care and compassion to guide them along,” said Sullivan. “These awards will support outstanding youth-serving organizations like the Cal Ripken Sr. Foundation, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Boys and Girls Clubs and their local affiliates across the country as they help youth discover their talents, find their purpose and realize their full potential. We are incredibly grateful to our mentorship programs, both nationally and locally. Badges in Blue and Badges for Baseball are great examples of successful community partnerships through law enforcement and mentoring.”
Grants from OJP’s Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) will allow national, state and local organizations to provide mentoring to youth who are at risk of juvenile delinquency, victimization and juvenile justice system involvement. Funds also support the National Mentoring Resource Center, which last year provided training and other support to 362 school-, community- and faith-based mentoring programs that served more than 79,000 youth nationwide.
“We can take no greater step toward securing the future health and prosperity of our nation than by investing now in the physical safety and emotional resilience of our children,” said OJJDP Administrator Caren Harp. “These grants will give law enforcement officials, service providers and children’s advocates the resources they need to fight off predators, take kids out of harm’s way and help children overcome the effects of trauma.”
Mentoring programs supported by OJJDP help youth make connections with leaders and respected members of their communities, including law enforcement officers. Police and sheriffs’ departments have formed close and lasting bonds with young citizens, leading to greater trust and respect between law enforcement professionals and community members. Grants also address the impact of the addiction crisis on children and teens. Funds support mentoring in rural and other underserved communities hit hard by the opioid epidemic.
In addition, more than 100 sites are receiving grants from OJJDP and OJP’s Office for Victims of Crime to help find missing children, investigate and prosecute child exploitation cases, serve abused and neglected children, and assist minor victims of human trafficking.
Sullivan was joined today by Steve Salem, President and CEO of the Cal Ripken Sr. Foundation; V. Glenn Fueston Jr. of the Maryland Governor’s Office of Crime Prevention, Youth and Victim Services; Sergeant Kweise Dadzie from the Prince George’s Police Athletic League Badges for Baseball mentorship program; U.S. Attorney for the District of Maryland Rob K. Hur; and representatives of the Boys and Girls Club of Annapolis and Anne Arundel County, where the event was held.
The Office of Justice Programs, directed by Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Katharine T. Sullivan, provides federal leadership, grants, training, technical assistance and other resources to improve the nation’s capacity to prevent and reduce crime, assist victims and enhance the rule of law by strengthening the criminal and juvenile justice systems. More information about OJP and its components is located at www.ojp.gov.
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This report is the 32nd in an annual series based on data from BJS's Federal Justice Statistics Program, which began in 1979.
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- U.S. Trustee Program Announces Streamlined Forms for Completing Chapter 11 Financial ReportsBy Sam NewsDecember 21, 2020The Department of Justice’s U.S. Trustee Program (USTP) announced today the publication of a final rule in the Federal Register that streamlines the financial reports required under the Bankruptcy Code to be filed with the bankruptcy court by the vast majority of business and individual debtors in chapter 11 bankruptcy, including in the largest reorganization cases.[Read More…]
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- On the Passing of Former Marshallese President Litokwa TomeingBy Sam NewsOctober 19, 2020Michael R. Pompeo, [Read More…]
- Secretary Blinken’s Call with Pakistani Foreign Minister QureshiBy Sam NewsJanuary 29, 2021
- Federal Contracting: Actions Needed to Improve Department of Labor’s Enforcement of Service Worker Wage ProtectionsBy Sam NewsNovember 23, 2020The Department of Labor (DOL) completed over 5,000 Service Contract Act (SCA) cases, which for many resulted in the awarding of back wages to federally contracted security guards, janitors, and other service workers, in fiscal years 2014 through 2019, according to available data. DOL enforces the SCA, which was enacted to protect workers on certain types of federal service contracts. DOL found SCA violations—primarily of wage and benefit protections—in 68 percent of cases. Employers across a range of service industries agreed to pay around $224 million in back wages (see figure for examples). Sixty cases resulted in debarment—a decision to prevent an employer from being awarded new federal contracts for 3 years. DOL's strategic plan emphasizes optimizing resources for resolving cases using all available enforcement tools. However, DOL does not analyze its use of enforcement tools, such as debarment or employer compliance agreements. Therefore, DOL may lack a complete picture of how it uses resources on different strategies for resolving SCA cases, as well as the effectiveness of these enforcement strategies. Back Wages Paid for SCA Cases in Example Industries, Fiscal Years 2014-2019 Note: Mail haul refers to surface mail transportation by contract carriers. Values are adjusted for inflation and expressed in fiscal year 2019 dollars using the Gross Domestic Product Price Index from the U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis. DOL reported various challenges to enforcing the SCA, including difficulty communicating with contracting agencies. For example, DOL officials told GAO that poor communication with contracting agencies—particularly with the U.S. Postal Service (USPS)—can affect and delay cases, though USPS officials told GAO they were unaware of any communication gaps. Without addressing communication issues between USPS and DOL, USPS's implementation and DOL's enforcement of the SCA may be weakened. GAO found that contracting agencies may face SCA implementation challenges, including not having key information about SCA debarments and violations from DOL. When recording SCA debarments, DOL does not always include the unique identifier for an employer so that contracting agencies can accurately identify debarred firms. DOL also does not have a process that consistently or reliably informs contracting agencies about SCA violations by employers. Without improved information sharing by DOL, an agency may award a contract to an employer without being aware of or considering its past SCA violations. The SCA ensures that service workers on certain federal contracts receive pay and benefits that reflect current employment conditions in their locality. From fiscal years 2014 through 2019, the U.S. government obligated over $720 billion on service contracts covered under the SCA. GAO was asked to review SCA implementation and enforcement. This report examines (1) what available data reveal about past SCA cases, (2) what challenges DOL reports facing in enforcing the SCA, and (3) how contracting agencies implement the SCA. GAO analyzed DOL and federal procurement data for fiscal years 2014 through 2019, the most recent years available; reviewed a nongeneralizable sample of contract performance assessments; examined practices at three agencies selected to represent a range of contracting services and agency size; interviewed DOL officials; and reviewed relevant federal laws, policy, and guidance. GAO is making six recommendations, including that DOL analyze its use of enforcement tools; that DOL and USPS implement written protocols to improve communication with each other; and that DOL improve its information sharing with contracting agencies on SCA debarments and investigation outcomes. DOL and USPS generally concurred with the recommendations. For more information, contact Thomas M. Costa at (202) 512-7215 or email@example.com.[Read More…]
- Priority Open Recommendations: Department of Veterans AffairsBy Sam NewsMay 17, 2021What GAO Found In April 2020, GAO identified 33 priority recommendations for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Since then, VA has implemented 13 of those recommendations by, among other things, taking actions to ensure that veterans receive evidence-based mental health treatment. In May 2021, GAO identified 8 additional priority recommendations for VA, bringing the total number to 28. These recommendations involve the following areas: response to the COVID-19 pandemic; veterans’ access to timely health care; the veterans community care program; human capital management; information technology; appeals reform for disability benefits; quality of care and patient safety; veteran suicide prevention; efficiency within the VA health care system; national policy documents; procurement policies and practices; and capital planning. Addressing the high priority recommendations identified above has the potential to significantly improve VA's operations, including those related to COVID-19. Why GAO Did This Study Priority open recommendations are the GAO recommendations that warrant priority attention from heads of key departments or agencies because their implementation could save large amounts of money; improve congressional and/or executive branch decision-making on major issues; eliminate mismanagement, fraud, and abuse; or ensure that programs comply with laws and funds are legally spent, among other benefits. Since 2015 GAO has sent letters to selected agencies to highlight the importance of implementing such recommendations. For more information, contact A. Nicole Clowers at (202) 512-7114 or firstname.lastname@example.org.[Read More…]
- U.S. Trustee Program Reaches Settlement with McKinsey and Company to Withdraw and Waive its Fees in the Westmoreland Coal Bankruptcy CaseBy Sam NewsDecember 3, 2020The Department of Justice’s U.S. Trustee Program (USTP) has entered into a settlement agreement with global consulting firm McKinsey & Company (McKinsey) requiring McKinsey to forego payment of fees in the Westmoreland Coal bankruptcy case pending in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas (Westmoreland Case).[Read More…]
- Justice Department Reaches Agreement with Two Community Colleges to Improve Access for Students with DisabilitiesBy Sam NewsMay 6, 2021The Justice Department announced today the signing of two agreements with community colleges to remove barriers experienced by students with disabilities, including veterans.[Read More…]
- International Day for the Elimination of Sexual Violence in ConflictBy Sam NewsJune 19, 2021
- Assistant Attorney General Beth A. Williams Delivers Opening Remarks at the Federalist Society, Colorado Lawyers Chapter Panel Discussion: “Reviewing the Supreme Court’s 2019/20 Term”By Sam NewsAugust 12, 2020Thank you for that kind introduction, Will, and for the invitation to join you today. Though I wish I could join you in person, even at this distance, it is a great pleasure to be here with you all.[Read More…]
- How We Transformed Public Health Data for COVID-19 and the FuturBy Sam NewsJanuary 19, 2021Data is the lifeblood of [Read More…]
- Tax Preparer Charged with COVID-19 Loan FraudBy Sam NewsMarch 17, 2021A South Florida tax preparer was charged Tuesday by criminal information with wire fraud in connection with a scheme to obtain over 100 COVID-19-relief loans under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).[Read More…]
- Armenia Travel AdvisoryBy Sam NewsSeptember 26, 2020Reconsider travel to [Read More…]
- International Law Enforcement Operation Targeting Opioid Traffickers on the Darknet Results in over 170 Arrests Worldwide and the Seizure of Weapons, Drugs and over $6.5 MillionBy Sam NewsSeptember 22, 2020Today, the Department of Justice, through the Joint Criminal Opioid and Darknet Enforcement (JCODE) team joined Europol to announce the results of Operation DisrupTor, a coordinated international effort to disrupt opioid trafficking on the Darknet. The operation, which was conducted across the United States and Europe, demonstrates the continued partnership between JCODE and Europol against the illegal sale of drugs and other illicit goods and services. Operation DisrupTor builds on the success of last year’s Operation SaboTor and the coordinated law enforcement takedown of the Wall Street Market, one of the largest illegal online markets on the dark web.[Read More…]
- Russia and the Assad Regime’s Superficial Support for Syrian RefugeesBy Sam NewsNovember 14, 2020Cale Brown, Deputy [Read More…]
- NASA’s TESS, Spitzer Missions Discover a World Orbiting a Unique Young StarBy Sam NewsIn SpaceSeptember 26, 2020The newly discovered [Read More…]
- Secretary Antony J. Blinken with Olena Frolyak of ICTVBy Sam NewsMay 6, 2021
- Acting Assistant Secretary Reeker’s Travel to Italy, Albania, and North MacedoniaBy Sam NewsJune 18, 2021
- Italy Travel AdvisoryBy Sam NewsSeptember 26, 2020Reconsider travel to [Read More…]
- Secretary Blinken’s Call with Iraqi Prime Minister al-KadhimiBy Sam NewsFebruary 16, 2021
- DRL FY19 Countering Corruption Amid COVID-19By Sam NewsSeptember 27, 2020Bureau of Democracy, [Read More…]
- Former Rapides Parish Correctional Officer Sentenced for Violating the Civil Rights of Three InmatesBy Sam NewsMay 17, 2021A former correctional officer with the Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office (RPSO), Detention Center 1, in Alexandria, Louisiana, was sentenced today in federal court for violating the civil rights of three inmates in his custody.[Read More…]
- Patient Recruiter Convicted in $2.8 Million Telemedicine Scheme Against MedicareBy Sam NewsJanuary 11, 2021The owner of an Orlando-area telemarketing call center was convicted for his role in a kickback scheme involving expensive genetic tests and fraudulent telemedicine services that resulted in the payment of approximately $2.8 million in false and fraudulent claims to Medicare.[Read More…]
- Secretary Blinken’s Call with Bruneian Foreign Minister II ErywanBy Sam NewsFebruary 25, 2021
- Japanese CEO and Employees Charged in Scheme to Defraud U.S. Navy and Dump Wastewater in OceanBy Sam NewsFebruary 17, 2021Three Japanese nationals, including the president and chief executive officer of Yokohama, Japan-based Kanto Kosan Co. Ltd. (Kanto Kosan) were indicted by a federal grand jury Tuesday in connection with an alleged long-running scheme to defraud the U.S. Navy and pollute Japanese waters by dumping contaminated water removed from U.S. Navy ships into the ocean.[Read More…]
- Biofuel Fraudster Sentenced to Seven Years in Prison for Scamming Multiple Federal Agencies and CustomersBy Sam NewsAugust 6, 2020The owner of a biofuel company was sentenced to seven years in prison followed by a three-year term of supervised release and ordered to pay $10,207,000 in restitution for defrauding multiple federal agencies and customers.[Read More…]
- Comet NEOWISE Sizzles as It Slides by the Sun, Providing a Treat for ObserversBy Sam NewsIn SpaceSeptember 26, 2020Catch the comet in the [Read More…]
- Justice Department Concludes Its Investigation of D.C.-Area Private High Schools’ Decision to Stop Offering Advanced Placement CoursesBy Sam NewsJanuary 11, 2021The Department of Justice announced today that it has completed its investigation into whether Georgetown Day School, Holton-Arms School, Landon School, Maret School, National Cathedral School, The Potomac School, St. Albans School, and Sidwell Friends School (jointly, “the Schools”) collectively agreed to stop offering Advanced Placement (AP) courses by 2022 in violation of the Sherman Act. The Schools announced in June 2018 that they would eliminate AP courses from their curricula by 2022.[Read More…]
- Assistant Attorney General Beth A. Williams Delivers Remarks at Columbia Law School Virtual Event on Combating the Online Exploitation of ChildrenBy Sam NewsOctober 28, 2020Good afternoon, everyone, and thank you for joining us today for a conversation on one of the most pressing challenges we face – the continuing fight against the online exploitation of children. I want to thank Berit Berger and Columbia Law School for hosting us virtually, and for putting together this event on such an important subject.[Read More…]
- Former Subcontractor Sentenced for Obstruction of JusticeBy Sam NewsFebruary 17, 2021A former subcontractor for the U.S. Marines Corps was sentenced today to 18 months in prison for destroying records in connection with a federal investigation of bribery and procurement fraud at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune (MCBCL), located in Jacksonville, North Carolina, announced Acting Assistant Attorney General Nicholas L. McQuaid of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division.[Read More…]
- Venezuela Travel AdvisoryBy Sam NewsSeptember 26, 2020Do not travel to [Read More…]
- Man Sentenced to 20 Years in Prison for Attempting to Provide Material Support to ISISBy Sam NewsMay 12, 2021A New York man was sentenced today to 20 years in prison for attempting to provide material support to the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, aka ISIS. Zachary Clark, aka Umar Kabir, Umar Shishani and Abu Talha, 42, of Brooklyn, New York, pleaded guilty in August 2020 to one count of attempting to provide material support or resources to a designated foreign terrorist organization, namely, ISIS.[Read More…]