by J.D. Davidson
Ohio crime victims are expected to receive additional support from groups around the state, according to Attorney General Dave Yost, who plans to award nearly $59 million in grants to groups that provide direct assistance.
Yost announced the anticipated grants, which include $13 million to help children. He expects $55 million to come from the Victims of Crime Act and another $3.5 million from the State Victim Assistance Act fund.
“Our job is to help protect our children, especially when they are at their most vulnerable,” Yost said in a news release. “I have worked hard to ensure we are dedicating as much support as possible to meeting that mission and, as always, there is more work to do.”
Yost wants to help fund groups that have direct, frontline interactions with victims, including sexual assaults, domestic violence and other violent crimes.
The fund, provided mostly from the federal government, has gone from $112 million in 2018 to $55.5 million this year. According to Yost, most groups in Ohio will receive at least two-thirds of the funding they received a year ago.
Money for the federal funds come from federal criminal fines, penalties and assessments from the U.S. attorney’s office, forfeited bail bonds and other fees collected by federal courts and the Federal Bureau of Prisons.
“Immediate solutions are required to ensure the long-term viability of this fund that offers crime victims a helping hand at perhaps the most vulnerable point in their life,” Yost said. “The financial strength of the fund is critical in making sure all Ohioans have access to the help they need.”
Yost has not finalized specific groups to receive the funds this year.
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