Tester Secures $3,573,360 in Justice Department Funding to Support Tribal Law Enforcement

Grant funds to support victims and prevent crime in Indian country

As part of his continued work with tribes in Montana to improve public safety, U.S. Senator Jon Tester secured $3,573,360 in Department of Justice funding to assist in tribal law enforcement and to keep communities safe.

“The safety of Montanans and our communities remains my top priority,” said tester. “I’m proud to have worked with tribal leadership and my colleagues on the other side to secure this funding so Montana tribes have the tools needed to hold criminals accountable and help victims recover.” to recover.”

Funding secured by Tester for Tribes comes from four different Department of Justice programs: the Crime Victim Fund’s (CVF) Tribal Set-Aside program, the Community Oriented Policing (COPS) program, the Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22) Coordinate Grant Program, and the FY22 Tribal Assistance Solicitation Competitive Grant Program.

CVF Tribal Set-Aside Grants may be used for any purpose directly related to the care of victims of crime, and the Office for Victims of Crime encourages its tribal partners to be creative and innovative in using the funds to fund culturally relevant, linguistically appropriate, victim-centric services. Recipients will use resources to implement services for crime victims that meet community-identified needs and reflect tribal community values ​​and traditions.

CVF Tribal Set-Aside recipients include:

  • $609,751 for the crow tribe
  • $719,669 for the Blackfeet tribe
  • $504,456 for the Fort Peck Assiniboine & Sioux tribes
  • $410,245 for the Chippewa Cree tribe

Recipients of other scholarships are:

  • The Fort Belknap Indian Community will receive a $739,501 Coordinated Grant for FY22 to be used to improve victim services and prevent incidents related to murdered and missing Indigenous Persons (MMIP) and human trafficking cases. This is accomplished through the hiring of two Victim/Witness Specialists (VWS) to enhance victim advocacy, liaison with culture-based intervention services, and other local resources. VWS will work with other agencies such as the Chief Tribal Prosecutor, Law Enforcement Agency, Criminal Investigator and Federal Bureau of Investigation to improve local laws, policies and protocols for crime victims.
  • The Chippewa Cree Tribe will receive a $450,000 Fiscal Year 2022 Tribal Recruitment Contest Grant that will enhance its current efforts to improve the investigation, prosecution and treatment of criminal child abuse and neglect on the Rocky Boy Indian Reservation . Funds will be used to hire 1 full-time equivalent child advocate to work exclusively with child victims of child abuse, child neglect and child sexual abuse and their non-offending family members; Travel to OVC required training; purchase of a data management system; train staff; and provide services to at least 180 victims of child abuse and neglect, or approximately five children per month.
  • The Crow Tribe will receive a $129,552 COPS grant to be used to develop a comprehensive strategic plan across the tribe’s justice system to build internal capacity and capabilities for an effective and sustainable community-driven public safety program.
  • The Fort Peck Assiniboine & Sioux Tribes receive a $10,186 grant from the Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) program, which supports a wide range of crime prevention and control activities on their own state and local basis needs and conditions will support. Grant funds may be used for state and local initiatives, technical assistance, training, personnel, equipment, supplies, contractual support, and information systems for criminal or civil litigation.

As a past chair of the Senate American Indian Affairs Committee, Tester has consistently campaigned to provide tribal governments and organizations with the resources they need to reduce crime and combat the MMIP epidemic. He ran the Senate passage Savanna’s Act and the Not Invisible ActBoth of which were signed into law in October 2020 improve information sharing and cooperation between tribal and federal law enforcement agencies and he has secured millions to improve law enforcement, improve public safety and assist victims in Indian country.

As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Tester works tirelessly to increase police funding and ensure tribal law enforcement officers have the resources they need to keep communities safe. He recently secured more than $1 billion in critical funding for local, state and federal law enforcement and public safety programs as part of the 2022 bipartisan “Omnibus” funding package. Tester was the only member of the Montana delegation to support the bill, which included $647.7 million for Byrne JAG Funding, a $190 million increase, in the fiscal year 2022 (FY22) omnibus funds package. This included $382 million, an increase of 6 percent, in support of state, local and tribal criminal justice systems.

Additionally, Tester is pushing for more resources for Montana law enforcement agencies to fight drug trafficking in its nonpartisan Assisting Narcotics and Trafficking Officers in Interdicting (ANTI) Drugs Act.

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