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2019 Report to the Nation

Fiscal Years 2017 - 2018
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The Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) is pleased to present this report of activities during fiscal years (FY) 2017 and 2018. Every year, OVC supports millions of victims of crime as they heal from their victimization and rebuild their lives. The core of this support is the Crime Victims Fund (the Fund), which is financed by fines, bond forfeitures, and penalties stemming from federal crimes—not from tax dollars. In FYs 2017 and 2018, Congress made available the largest amount of Fund deposits it has allowed since placing an annual cap on available funding in 2000. In FY 2017, the appropriation cap on the Fund was $2.573 million—the second largest amount in the Fund's history. Then, in FY 2018, Congress monumentally increased the appropriations cap to $4.436 billion, a new record in funding available to support victim services.

Through these high appropriation caps in FYs 2017 and 2018, OVC was able to increase the amount of funds it provided to states. In FY 2017, OVC awarded more than $1.846 billion to state victim assistance programs. In FY 2018, OVC significantly increased this amount to $3.328 billion, a record high. The increased amount of funds available to states for victim assistance is allowing them to provide more critical direct services to victims than ever before. These services—through subgrants to state agencies and local service providers—provide help for individuals, families, and communities recovering from both the immediate and prolonged effects of victimization. Assistance funds support critical services such as crisis counseling, telephone and onsite information and referrals, criminal justice support and advocacy, emergency shelter, therapy, and more. States are also using assistance funds to develop new initiatives that address emerging needs and gaps in services for individuals and local communities.

These high appropriation caps have benefited victims throughout the country. In FYs 2017 and 2018, nearly 500,000 victims received compensation payments, and nearly 19 million victims received VOCA-funded assistance services.

In addition to victim compensation and assistance, OVC supports a variety of key initiatives throughout the Nation. In this report, you will learn about OVC's use of funding for direct services, building capacity in the victim services field, supporting research and evaluation, spurring innovation, and serving victims of all forms of victimization. These include victims of human trafficking, child abuse, sexual assault, financial exploitation, terrorism and mass violence, and those in tribal communities.

In FYs 2017 and 2018, selfless victim service providers throughout the Nation dedicated themselves to helping those who need support and advocacy. This report provides descriptions and vignettes of important victim service programs—their successes, their challenges, and their efforts to help victims of crime rebuild their lives.