In 2016, the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) awarded the Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ) $920,000 to allocate to local sexual assault service providers to increase their capacity to serve survivors. In addition to direct victim services, providers will also collaborate with local law enforcement agencies to engage in victim-centered notification, protocol development, and training related to previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits.
“WCASA wholeheartedly supports and applauds DOJ’s efforts to secure funding for community-based sexual assault service providers who will see an increase in requests for services as the result of testing previously unsubmitted sexual assault kits and an overall intensified conversation about sexual assault around the state. We look forward to our continued partnership to best serve survivors."
- Pennie Meyers, Wisconsin Coalition Against Sexual Assault
Sexual assault service providers in the ten counties with the highest number of unsubmitted kits were the only eligible applicants for this funding. Agencies receiving awards and their projects include:
Brown Couny: Family Services of Northeast Wisconsin, Inc.
Family Services of Northeast Wisconsin, Inc. will use awarded SAKI funds to provide advocacy services and support as well as information, education, referrals and accompaniment through the criminal justice process. Family Services of Northeast Wisconsin, Inc. will additionally improve Brown County’s response protocols and increase offender accountability.
Dane County: Rape Crisis Center
Rape Crisis Center (RCC) will use awarded SAKI funds to provide crisis intervention and counseling services as well as fund legal services that will be accessible to RCC clients. Rape Crisis Center will also be purchasing billboards, bus boards and signage as part of their outreach campaign.
Fond du Lac County: ASTOP Sexual Abuse Center, Inc.
ASTOP Sexual Abuse Center, Inc. will use awarded SAKI funds to provide advocacy and related services to victims of unsubmitted SAKs. In addition, ASTOP will provide trainings to members of the local multidisciplinary team and will developed victim-centered notification processes, communication and supportive activities in collaboration with local law enforcement.
Kenosha County: Women & Children's Horizons, Inc.
Women & Children’s Horizons, Inc. will use awarded SAKI funds to implement evidence-based and victim-centered protocols within Kenosha County, improve collaboration with local law enforcement and provide direct services and support activities as they relate to unsubmitted SAKs.
Outagamie County: Sexual Assault Crisis Center-Fox Cities, Inc.
Sexual Assault Crisis Center- Fox Cities, Inc. will use awarded SAKI funds to establish and implement a victim-centered notification process, provide support activities and resources to clients and establish trainings for members of the Outagamie multidisciplinary team.
Racine County: Lutheran Social Services
Lutheran Social Services will use awarded SAKI funds to provide direct services and support, increase the number of resources and services available to victims of sexual assault and attend trainings as they relate to sexual assault responses.
Rock County: Family Services-SAWNI-Sexual Assault Recovery Program
Family Services-SWANI-Sexual Assault Recovery Program will use awarded SAKI funds to provide direct services and support, provide trainings to members of the Rock county multidisciplinary team and establish victim-centered and trauma-informed protocols that will be utilized in response to unsubmitted SAKs.
Sauk County: Hope House of South Central Wisconsin
Hope House of South Central Wisconsin will use awarded SAKI funds to provide training to members of the Sauk County multidisciplinary team, provide adequate services to survivors and enhance the structure and protocols of the Sauk County Coordinated Community Response team.
Winnebago County: Reach Counseling Services
Reach Counseling Services will use awarded SAKI funds to assess underlying reasons for unsubmitted SAKs in Winnebago County, improve the financial and technological constraints as they relate to services to sexual assault victims and improve the overall protocol and response of the Winnebago County multidisciplinary team.