Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2009, $4,450,000)
The Congressionally Selected Awards Program, authorized by the Omnibus Appropriations Act, 2009 (Pub. L. 111-8), helps improve the functioning of the criminal justice system, prevent or combat juvenile delinquency, and/or assist victims of crime (other than compensation). Funds should be used for the projects selected by Congress, in the amounts specified in the joint explanatory statement incorporated by reference into Pub. L. 111-8, and generally consistent with one or more of the following statutory purposes: improving the functioning of the criminal justice system, preventing or combating juvenile delinquency, or assisting victims of crime (other than compensation). Each of these purposes is framed using language drawn, respectively, from the former Byrne discretionary statute, the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act, the Victims of Crime Act, and the Violence Against Women Act. This project is authorized and funded through a line item in the FY 09 Congressional Budget and by the joint explanatory statement that is incorporated by reference into the FY09 Omnibus Appropriations Act.
The Unlawful Narcotics Investigations Treatment And Education, Inc. (UNITE) will use Fiscal Year 2009 Congressionally Selected Awards funds to continue the support of Operation UNITE to rid communities of illegal drug use through undercover narcotics investigations, coordination of treatment for substance abusers, provision of support to families and friends of substance abusers, and education of the public about the dangers of using drugs. Operation UNITE will educate and activate individuals by developing and empowering community coalitions to neither accept nor tolerate the drug culture. They will continue to significantly reduce illegal drug availability in the region through: aggressive enforcement and quality investigations; stiff penalties with consistent sentencing; increased range of substance abuse treatment opportunities for addicts, inmates and families; and an aggressive informational campaign that encourages involvement in programs and activities. The project will educate communities by proactively increasing the involvement of citizens, governments, schools, churches, youth, and faith-based communities to change cultural norms and empower youth to be anti-drug leaders in their communities.