Justice Department Awards Nearly $20 Million to Help Jurisdictions Track Sex Offenders and Protect Young Athletes

WASHINGTON – The Office of Justice Programs’ Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking (SMART Office) today announced it has awarded nearly $16.8 million to help states, U.S. territories and tribal communities develop and improve their systems to register and track sex offenders and nearly $1 million to maintain the Dru Sjodin National Sex Offender Public Website. The awards will help jurisdictions meet the requirements of the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA), Title I of the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006. Additionally, SMART awarded nearly $2.3 million to keep young Olympic athletes safe from abuse, under the Keep Young Athletes Safe Act of 2018.

“Citizens are better protected from sexual violence when jurisdictions follow SORNA’s standards,” said OJP Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Katharine T. Sullivan. “The Office of Justice Programs is committed to giving state, territory and tribal officials the resources they need to register and track sex offenders and prevent known threats in one community from posing new dangers to others.”

Approximately $16 million will help jurisdictions across the country develop and enhance programs designed to implement the provisions of SORNA. Almost $800,000 is being awarded to provide training and technical assistance to jurisdictions implementing SORNA standards.

The U.S. Center for SafeSport will receive the $2.3 million Keep Young Athletes Safe grant to continue developing a comprehensive training and prevention program to prevent abuse in the athletic programs of the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee, national governing bodies and Paralympic sports organizations.

The SMART Office will award nearly $1 million to the Institute for Intergovernmental Research to support maintenance, operations and technological improvements for the Dru Sjodin National Sex Offender Public Website. NSOPW.gov links state territorial and tribal public registry websites and allows the public to search for registered sex offenders on a national scale.

“Our mission at the SMART Office is to help our state, tribal and territorial partners register and provide notification to the public of sex offenders within their jurisdictions,” said Kendel Ehrlich, Director of the SMART Office. “We will continue to provide both law enforcement and the public with the tools they need to better inform and protect their communities and themselves.”

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