Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2021, $600,000)
FY 2021 Building State Technology Capacity
October 1, 2021 – September 30, 2024
The Justice and Community Services (JCS) Section of the West Virginia Division of Administrative Services (DAS), which is the State Administrative Agency (SAA) for criminal justice-related activities in the state, is applying for $600,000 under the FY 2021 Building State Technology Capacity grant program.
The West Virginia Child Advocacy Network (WVCAN), the state chapter organization supporting the Mountain State’s 21 Child Advocacy Centers (CACs), provides services and support to children and families after a report of suspected child abuse. CACs connect children to specialized services (forensic interviews, trauma-focused mental health services, child abuse medical evaluations, and family advocacy services) and coordinate with local multidisciplinary investigative teams to help kids heal and hold offenders accountable.
Children receiving CAC services in WV rely on our ability to store, track, and transmit their sensitive case information, including clinical data, in a secure and HIPAA-compliant manner. In 2019, WVCAN conducted an internal Security Risk Assessment and offered the same to all 21 CACs in WV, with 14 participating. The results of these assessments demonstrated a wide range of capabilities, practices, and liabilities around client data and programmatic financial data.
Funds received through the FY 2021 Building State Technology Capacity grant program will be used to: 1) facilitate data security/HIPAA compliance at WV CACs; 2) partner with interested CACs to determine criteria, strategies, and agreed upon collaborative models for planning, implementing, and evaluating the proposed technological upgrades and support; 3) incorporate the proposed project in WVCAN’s 2021 strategic planning process to address gaps in technology and cybersecurity practices; and 4) share learning with community stakeholders through quarterly progress reports to be presented during annual meeting of the WV’s Against Violence Committee, quarterly progress reports to victim service providers at all member CACs, and by proposing national conference presentations on project design and success to other state networks of VOCA-funded CACs.
The project will involve a collaborative partnership between JCS, WVCAN, and participating CACs. Program staff at these agencies will be responsible for assessing and monitoring progress towards goals and objectives throughout the three-year project period.