Every federally recognized Tribe that submits an application for the OVC Tribal Victim Services Set-Aside (TVSSA) program receives a grant award. Not all Tribes apply each year. Information about how to participate in the noncompetitive, formula grant TVSSA program is posted on OVC’s website each year.
OVC is the Federal entity designated by the VOCA statute to administer the TVSSA funding, including establishing the requirements and eligibility criteria for the program. The statutory phrase “services for victims of crime” requires that beneficiaries of this program be victims of criminal victimization. Under the TVSSA program, Tribes may provide a broad range of services to crime victims.
OVC’s interpretation of what is allowable under the Set-Aside is very broad—essentially any service to benefit a crime victim is allowable. For example, funding under the TVSSA Formula Program can be used to support activities such as—
- direct services to victims of crime;
- needs assessment and strategic planning;
- victim service program development and implementation;
- victim service program expansion;
- community outreach and education;
- purchasing or procuring tangible items related to victim services; and other activities needed to address the individualized needs of victims of any type of crime in Tribal communities;
- support for Missing or Murdered Indigenous Persons (see below for additional information); and
- other activities needed to address the needs of a wide variety of crime victims in Tribal communities.
Because the statutory authorization for the TVSSA specifies that the funds are to be used for “services for victims of crime,” cash payments to crime victims are not allowable.
Tribes under the TVSSA have more latitude than the states under the State Victim Assistance Formula Grant program in determining how to use their funds.
100% of Tribal Set-Aside funding is used for Tribes—through grants directly to Tribes, grants to support Tribes through convenings such as the biennial National Indian Nations Conference, and training and technical assistance to support grantees in implementing their awards. View details about the obligation of the Tribal Set-Aside from the Crime Victims Fund from Fiscal Years 2018–2023.
The assigned Grant Award Administrator and all Financial Managers for grant awards must have successfully completed the OJP Grants Financial Management and Grant Administration Training by 120 days after the grantee's acceptance date of the award. Successful completion of such a training within the last three years, will satisfy this condition. In the event that either the Grant Award Administrator or Financial Manager changes during the award project period, the new staff member must have successfully completed an OJP Grants Financial Management and Grant Administration Training by 120 calendar days after the user information has been changed in JustGrants.
Grantees should anticipate that OJP will immediately withhold award funds, if the grantee fails to comply with this condition. Failure to comply also may lead OJP to impose additional appropriate conditions on the grant award.
Grantees should note that this requirement is also included as an award condition.
Please refer to the solicitation an award was funded under for program-specific requirements.
Federal laws prohibit recipients of Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA) funding administered by the OJP from discriminating in the delivery of services on the basis of age, race, color, national origin, religion, or disability. Applicable federal laws also prohibit TVPA recipients from discriminating on the basis of disability in their employment practices, and from discriminating against employees and beneficiaries on the basis of sex in grant-funded education or training programs. Recipients are also obligated under federal civil rights laws to provide meaningful access to their programs and activities for persons with limited English proficiency. Under certain circumstances, it might be permissible to limit services based upon age. Please note that other federal, state, or local laws prohibiting discrimination may apply. See Civil Rights Requirements Associated with OJP Awards for more information.
All grantees are required to have a process in place for investigating discrimination complaints. The Office for Civil Rights at OJP ensures that recipients of financial assistance from OVC comply with federal laws that prohibit discrimination and is available to provide technical assistance to OVC grantees about civil rights obligations.
Employees, beneficiaries, and applicants for employment or services of an OVC grantee who believe that they have experienced unlawful discrimination may file a civil rights complaint with the Office for Civil Rights at OJP.
Yes. Compliance with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits grantees from discriminating on the basis of national origin in the delivery of services or benefits, entails taking reasonable steps to ensure that persons with limited English proficiency (LEP) have meaningful access to their programs and activities. An LEP person is one whose first language is not English and who has a limited ability to read, write, speak, or understand English.
To assist grantees in meeting their obligation to serve LEP persons, DOJ has published a number of resources, including a language access assessment and planning tool. Additional resources are available on the Office of Civil Rights webpage. Grantees should contemplate how their program budget supports the costs for providing interpretation and translation services to eligible LEP persons or be able explain how language access will be provided if grant funds are not needed for this purpose.