WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) today announced $10,918,475 in federal grant funding from the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) to help Illinois agencies and community groups provide critical support and protections for survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence. Today’s funding comes from various DOJ programs authorized by the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) to prevent, combat, and investigate sexual assault and violence against women and support critical victims’ services, including counseling and housing assistance.

More than six months have passed since the House passed the VAWA Reauthorization of 2019, but the Republican-controlled Senate has yet to bring the bill to the floor.

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"Since its passage 25 years ago, the Violence Against Women Act has been a lifeline for survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault in Illinois and across the country,” Durbin said. “The funding announced today is the latest example of the valuable and lifesaving assistance that VAWA provides. It’s shameful that Leader McConnell has buried this critical bill in the legislative graveyard – it’s long past time for the Senate to renew and strengthen VAWA.”

“Domestic and sexual violence is all too common across this nation and every survivor deserves easy access to resources and support that can help during trying times,” Duckworth said. “This funding is critical in aiding the courageous work of advocates by providing survivors with services, such as safe housing, legal support and a confidential hotline. The Senate needs to reauthorize and expand Violence Against Women Act so that every survivor can access the lifesaving care they need. We cannot abandon them.”

Under this announcement, the following Illinois communities, organizations, and entities will receive funding:

Apna Ghar, Incorporated (Chicago, IL) will receive $300,000 to deliver victim-centered and trauma-informed services to Asian Pacific Islander communities and expand the capacity of community-based organizations to provide culturally-specific resources and support for victims of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking.

Benedictine University (Lisle, IL) will receive $299,424 to enhance victim services, implement prevention and education programs, and strengthen security and investigation strategies in order to prevent, prosecute, and respond to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking.

Children's Home & Aid (Chicago, IL): $550,000 to work with its partners in McLean County to improve the response of the civil and criminal justice system to families with a history of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking, or in cases involving allegations of child sexual abuse.

Crisis Center for South Suburbia (Tinley Park, IL) will receive $450,000 to provide both housing and supportive services to move survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking who are homeless to permanent housing.

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Elmhurst College (Elmhurst, IL) will receive $295,741 to enhance victim services, implement prevention and education programs, and strengthen security and investigation strategies in order to prevent, prosecute, and respond to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking.

Heart Women & Girls (Chicago, IL) will receive $444,446 to provide and enhance population-specific outreach and services for Muslim American survivors of sexual assault in Chicago, Illinois, and Washington, DC.

Illinois College (Jacksonville, IL) will receive $300,000 to enhance victim services, implement prevention and education programs, and strengthen security and investigation strategies in order to prevent, prosecute, and respond to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking.

Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority (Chicago, IL) will receive $5,224,955 to develop and strengthen law enforcement, prosecution, and court strategies to combat violent crimes against women and to develop and strengthen victim services, including community-based, culturally-specific services, in cases involving domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking.

Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority (Chicago, IL) will also receive $1,000,000 to promote coordinated community response to these crimes, including selecting three model sites to focus on domestic violence, people with disabilities and older adults, and human trafficking,

Lake County Crisis Center For The Prevention And Treatment Of Domestic Violence (Zion, IL) will receive $500,000 provide prevention education, mentoring, case management, and counseling to at-risk youth in Waukegan, Illinois in collaboration with community partners.

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (Edwardsville, IL) will receive $260,000 to enhance victim services, implement prevention and education programs, and strengthen security and investigation strategies in order to prevent, prosecute, and respond to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking.

SHALVA, Incorporation (Chicago, IL) will receive $448,909 to support Jewish survivors of domestic abuse through counseling, supportive services, and community education.

Winnebago County Circuit Court (Rockford, IL) will receive $500,000 to create a Violation Enforcement Team, provide co-located legal advocacy services for victims of intimate partner violence, and train prosecutors to enforce protection orders.

Winnebago County Circuit Court (Rockford, IL) will also receive $345,000 to continue the Domestic Violence Coordinated Court (DVCC), train court-based, court-related, and civil justice personnel, provide resources in juvenile court matters and provide civil legal assistance.

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