Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2006, $973,656)
The Protecting Inmates and Safeguarding Communities Discretionary Grant Program was created as a result of the Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003 (the Act), Public Law 108-79. The goal of the Act is to eradicate sexual assaults in all of the correctional facilities in this country, be they federal, state, or local in nature. Nevertheless, the statutory focus for this grant program is state and local correctional facilities. This program is divided into two parts: (1) Protecting Inmates and (2) Safeguarding Communities. The Protecting Inmates part focuses on providing funding to state and local agencies for the costs of personnel, training, technical assistance, and data collection in the areas of prevention, investigation, prosecution, and treatment of victims of inmate on inmate sexual assault in a correctional facility. The Safeguarding Communities component of the program focuses on assisting the states in developing and implementing strategies when making release decisions for sexual aggressors without compromising public safety and addressing the needs of the victims after release.
The Pennsylvania Department of Corrections (DOC) will use their 2006 Prison Rape funds to build upon and strengthen the previous efforts to eliminate and track prison rape and forced sexual conduct incidents within the state correctional system. This will be done by: 1) increasing prison response to victims of sexual violence, 2) increasing the availability, reliability, validity and timeliness of data on incidences of prison rape, 3) improving prevention strategies for prison rape, 4) improving prosecution strategies for prison rape, and 5) improving the provision of victim services for inmates, who are victims of sexual assault.