PROVIDENCE – United States Attorney Aaron L. Weisman today announced an award of $208,803 to the RI Public Safety Grant Administration Office in Department of Justice grants to develop and improve systems to register and track sex offenders in Rhode Island. Awarded by the Department’s Office of Justice Programs, these grants help states, U.S. territories and tribal communities register and track sex offenders and enable them to meet the requirements of the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA). Funds also help maintain the Dru Sjodin National Sex Offender Public Website.
“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.”
OJP’s Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering and Tracking (SMART Office) is awarding approximately $16 million to jurisdictions across the country to develop and enhance programs designed to implement the provisions of SORNA. The SMART Office is awarding almost $800,000 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 and related 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, which 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.”
More information about OJP and its components can be found at www.ojp.gov.