Office for Victims of Crime Awards Nearly $4 Million to Support Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner Programs

The Office of Justice Programs’ (OJP) Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) announced that it has awarded almost $4 million to support the establishment or expansion of Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) programs that offer medical forensic care, advocacy and other victim services to sexual assault survivors on campuses of higher education. OJP Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Katharine T. Sullivan made the announcement during a roundtable discussion with U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania Scott W. Brady, OVC Director Jessica E. Hart, Dean of Duquesne University School of Nursing Mary Ellen Glasgow, and law enforcement leaders from Pittsburgh and surrounding jurisdictions.

“Victims of sexual assault deserve the best of care, including expert medical forensic attention that can help close out cases and bring perpetrators to justice,” said OJP Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Sullivan. “These grants will build a cadre of skilled medical professionals capable of responding immediately and holistically to the needs of sexual assault survivors. Making SANE Nurse positions available on college campus will help ensure survivors receive the trauma informed care they deserve and vital forensic evidence will be collected to ensure perpetrators are held accountable.”

“Nurses serving on the front lines of our communities are often the first to respond to and treat victims of sexual assault,” said U.S. Attorney Brady. “Far too many victims endure the physical and emotional trauma of a sexual assault only to wait long hours and have forensic exams conducted by personnel who lack the appropriate training and experience in forensic evidence collection. These SANE grants will allow our universities to create a pipeline of highly-skilled registered nurses to support victims of sexual assault and hold offenders accountable.”

This program will develop, expand or strengthen SANE services to improve the delivery of post-assault medical and advocacy services. Campuses will collaborate with victim service providers in the communities in which the institutions are located. If victim services programs are not available in the community or are not accessible to students, the institution will provide a victim services program on campus in collaboration with a community-based organization.

“Sexual assault is an appalling crime and an obscene violation of personal security and interpersonal trust,” said Director Hart. “The resources we are making available today will help institutions of higher learning bring comfort and relief to victims while widening the possibility for securing justice.”

OVC awarded $3,836,877 to eight institutions, listed below. Funds will help raise awareness and expand outreach about the SANE program and will provide more SANE services to survivors. Operational costs (including salaries and benefits for program staff), training and mentoring for aspiring and current SANEs and advocates, and equipment costs can be supported under this program. This program aims to respond to and empower sexual assault survivors while increasing perpetrator accountability.

  • University of South Alabama, Alabama
    • Total Awarded $493,244
  • Arizona Board of Regents, University of Arizona, Arizona
    • Total Awarded $499,382
  • Duquesne University, Pennsylvania
    • Total Awarded $499,391
  • The Pennsylvania State University, Pennsylvania
    • Total Awarded $500,000
  • The Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System Foundation, South Carolina
    • Total Awarded $345,926
  • Tennessee Technological University, Tennessee
    • Total Awarded $500,000
  • The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, Texas
    • Total Awarded $499,948
  • The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System, Wisconsin
    • Total Awarded $498,986

*******

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 can be found at www.ojp.gov.

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    What GAO Found In 2019, the Department of Energy's (DOE)'s National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) provided a report to Congress on its findings from its survey of the seven contractors that manage and operate its nuclear security enterprise sites to identify requirements the contractors viewed as burdensome. This survey was congressionally mandated after reports by external groups found that the environment in which NNSA carried out its oversight of such management and operating (M&O) contractors was strained. GAO reviewed information on the following three areas related to NNSA's report: Comparison of NNSA's findings with related reports. GAO found that during the past 10 years, three external groups carried out studies and assessments of the nuclear security enterprise and issued reports citing ways NNSA's oversight has contributed to burden for M&O contractors. These groups were all directed by Congress to complete their studies, which were published between 2014 and 2020. Their reports also cite ways in which NNSA's oversight may have contributed to increased costs or reduced mission capabilities. NNSA's Burdensome Regulatory Requirements report explicitly identifies 91 requirements that M&O contractors found burdensome; these include requirements found in sources such as DOE and NNSA directives, federal regulations, and statutes. NNSA's approach to collecting and reporting information on requirements that M&O contractors identified as burdensome. NNSA first collected information on the requirements the contractors viewed as burdensome, and second, asked the contractors to rate these requirements based on the likelihood that the requirement could be changed and the effects such a change would have on cost savings, morale, recruitment and retention, and mission capability. While NNSA did not provide a definition to its contractors of what constituted a "burdensome" requirement, some contractors created their own definitions, while others told us the definition was understood based on the previously published related reports. GAO interviewed M&O contractor representatives and found that their definitions of what constituted a "burdensome requirement" varied. Also, the seven M&O contractors used different approaches to identify and rate requirements they considered burdensome. However, multiple M&O contractors identified the same requirements, or sources of those requirements, as burdensome. For example, one contractor identified the entire DOE Order for Program and Project Management of the Acquisition of Capital Assets (DOE Order 413.3B) as burdensome, while another contractor identified specific requirements within the same order as burdensome. NNSA actions to address matters that M&O contractors identified as burdensome. In its report, NNSA included a list of 16 matters that it committed to reviewing based on the rating data it collected from M&O contractors and input from members of the Operations and Efficiencies Board, an internal body established to improve coordination and collaboration across NNSA's sites. According to NNSA officials, 10 matters are under revision or have been changed; two matters were reviewed, but no changes were made; and four matters were reviewed, and M&O contractor input will be considered should the regulation undergo a revision in the future. NNSA's list of matters included DOE directives, federal requirements, and an M&O contract change. According to agency officials, NNSA chose to prioritize its review of certain matters because the agency did not have the resources to review all 91 requirements that M&O contractors identified as burdensome. NNSA provided technical comments on a draft of this report, which were incorporated as appropriate. Why GAO Did This Study NNSA is responsible for maintaining a safe, secure, and reliable nuclear stockpile and relies on and oversees contractors who manage and operate its laboratory and production sites. NNSA's M&O contracts include requirements for contractors to adhere to laws, regulations, and DOE and NNSA directives. NNSA also has processes to hold contractors accountable for meeting these requirements. Senate Report 115-262, accompanying the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019, directed NNSA to collect information from its M&O contractors on specific requirements they deemed particularly burdensome and to publish this information in a report. Senate Report 115-262 also included a provision for GAO to review NNSA's report. GAO's report provides information on (1) a comparison of NNSA's findings with findings reported by external groups, (2) NNSA's approach to collecting and reporting information on requirements the M&O contractors identified as burdensome, and (3) NNSA's actions to address the requirements that the M&O contractors identified. GAO reviewed NNSA's 2019 report and supplemental documents and interviewed NNSA officials and M&O contractor representatives. For more information, contact Allison Bawden at (202) 512-3841 or bawdena@gao.gov.
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  • Owner of Queens Acupuncture Business Pleads Guilty to Aiding and Assisting the Preparation of a False Tax Return
    In Crime News
    The co-owner of a New York acupuncture business pleaded guilty yesterday to aiding and assisting in the preparation of a false tax return, announced Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Richard E. Zuckerman of the Justice Department’s Tax Division.
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  • Secretary Michael R. Pompeo’s Call with Indian External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar
    In Crime Control and Security News
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  • Two Kentucky Real Estate Professionals Indicted for Rigging Farmland Auction
    In Crime News
    A federal grand jury in the Western District of Kentucky returned an indictment charging two Kentucky real estate professionals with conspiring to rig bids at an estate auction for farmland and timber rights.
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  • Las Vegas Man Sentenced to Prison for Fraudulent Tax Return Scheme
    In Crime News
    A Las Vegas, Nevada, man was sentenced to 70 months in prison for conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, announced Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Richard E. Zuckerman, U.S. Attorney Nicholas A. Trutanich for the District of Nevada, and Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation Special Agent in Charge Tara Sullivan.
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  • The Ortega Regime Should Immediately Release Opposition Leader Cristiana Chamorro  
    In Crime Control and Security News
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  • Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry Engages European Allies on Climate Ambition
    In Crime Control and Security News
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  • Justice Department Welcomes Passage of The Competitive Health Insurance Reform Act of 2020
    In Crime News
    On Jan. 13, 2021, President Donald J. Trump signed into law the Competitive Health Insurance Reform Act of 2020 (the “Act”), which limits the antitrust exemption available to health insurance companies under the McCarran-Ferguson Act.  The Act, sponsored by Rep. Peter DeFazio, passed the House of Representatives on Sept. 21, 2020 and passed the Senate on Dec. 22, 2020. 
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  • Joint Press Statement by U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland and European Commissioner for Justice Didier Reynders
    In Crime News
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  • FY 2021 State Justice Statistics Program for Statistical Analysis Centers (SJS-SAC) Technical Assistance Program
    In Justice News
    (Solicitation)
    The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), Office of Justice Programs (OJP), Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) is seeking applications for funding to administer activities under the FY 2021 State Justice Statistics Program for Statistical Analysis Centers (SJS-SAC) Technical Assistance Program. This program supports the collection, analysis, and dissemination of statistical information on crime and criminal justice at the state and local level.
    Grants.gov Application Deadline: 11:59 p.m. eastern time on June 14, 2021; JustGrants Application Deadline: 11:59 p.m. eastern time on June 28, 2021 [Read More…]
  • Federal Court Permanently Bars Southern Florida Tax Preparer from Preparing Returns
    In Crime News
    A federal court in the Southern District of Florida has permanently enjoined a West Palm Beach tax return preparer and her business from preparing federal income tax returns for others, the Justice Department announced today. According to the court’s order, it issued the injunction in response to violations of a prior order in the case that had allowed the preparer and her business to prepare returns subject to certain restrictions. In April 2017, the United States filed a complaint against Lena D. Cotton and Professional Accounting LDC, LLC, that alleged the defendants prepared returns with improper education credits, manipulated filing statuses, and improper vehicle deductions, among other issues. In November 2017, the court permanently enjoined both defendants from this and other specific conduct and required defendants to engage a “neutral monitor” to “determin[e] and/or secur[e] compliance” with injunction.
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