Last year, the Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) provided over $2 million to CASA programs in Kentucky. It also funded numerous other organizations in the Commonwealth helping victims and doing essential work for children and adults in need. The Crime Victims Fund is funded not by taxpayers but primarily from “criminal fines, forfeited appearance bonds, penalties and special assessments collected by the U.S. Attorneys’ Offices, federal courts, and the Federal Bureau of Prisons.”
The fund, however, is at risk of running out of money and jeopardizing the good work currently being done in Kentucky. Over half of CASA programs throughout the country receive VOCA funding and they are also at risk of losing funding.
The VOCA Fix to Sustain the Crime Victims Fund Act of 2021 (VOCA Fix Act) has been introduced in the U.S. House and Senate to help fund VOCA and ensure continued financial support. The National CASA/GAL Association signed on to a letter urging Members of Congress to take immediate action to pass the bill and prevent devastating cuts to federal VOCA funding for victim service programs. The bill has strong bipartisan support as well as the support of the wider stakeholder and advocacy community.
We hope you will share information about this important legislation with others and will send a message to your Members of Congress. Please share the link with your program staff, volunteers, supporters, family and friends to encourage them to write their legislators to fund VOCA and continue to support CASA’s vital work.