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Illinois gets money to combat sexual assault against women


WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Illinois, says the U.S. Department of Justice has awarded Illinois agencies, organizations and universities grants totaling $9,339,711 to prevent, combat, and investigate sexual assault and violence against women.

Thes funding will also support critical victims’ services, including counseling and housing assistance.

“This investment not only improves our law enforcement’s ability to prevent, investigate, and prosecute sexual assault and domestic violence, it ensures they have the tools and training to support survivors during the most difficult moments,” said Durbin. “Community organizations will also see their ability to provide valuable and potentially lifesaving assistance improved by this funding. Together, we can make significant strides toward ending sexual assault and domestic abuse, and I will continue working to provide Illinois with the critical resources needed to stop these terrible crimes.”

Among the entities received funding from the Department of Justice’s Office on Violence Against Women:

• Illinois Attorney General: $750,000 to develop and provide training on victim-centered techniques and procedures for first responders and law enforcement officials who investigate sexual assault cases;

• Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority:
o $533,742 to support rape crisis centers as they provide core services, direct intervention, and related assistance to victims of sexual assault;
o $5,264,779 to develop and strengthen law enforcement, prosecution, and court strategies to combat violence against women. Funding will also be used to bolster victim services, including community-based, culturally-specific services in cases involving domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence, and stalking.

• Southern Illinois University Edwardsville: $300,000 to create the SIUE Survivor Support Initiative to prevent and reduce sexual assault through education and increase student awareness of victims’ services.

— From the Illinois Business Journal

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