VOCA Funding Cut Information

 

We would like to share a significant funding update that will impact the state of Illinois in FY24. Beginning July 1, 2023, the funding available to Illinois Rape Crisis Centers through the Victims of Crime Act Fund (VOCA) will be cut by 49%. VOCA uses non-taxpayer money from the Crime Victims Fund (CVF) for programs that serve victims of crime. Nationally, these funds support services for over 6 million victims of all types of crimes annually through 6,462 direct service organizations, including Resilience.

How will these cuts impact Resilience?

The maximum Resilience will receive from ICASA this year is $510,000 compared to $1,035,000 which we received last year.  The loss could even be more severe. These cuts can lead to hiring freeze, potential furlough, and/or layoffs for Resilience staff. Our advocates, therapists, and educators are dedicated to supporting survivors and providing them with the best care, support, and empowerment but they cannot do that without funding.

How will this impact survivors?

Direct services to survivors like 24-hour medical advocacy, legal advocacy, crisis intervention, and ongoing counseling or trauma therapy will be significantly delayed or halted without adequate funding. Significant cuts to this funding will mean fewer advocates and therapists available to provide support, information, and options in the aftermath of sexual violence.

Call to Action

We need your help today to ensure that we can keep our services in operation and free for survivors and their loved ones.  On July 21, 2021, President Biden signed the VOCA Fix to Sustain the Crime Victims Fund Act of 2021 (VOCA Fix Act) into law (Public law 117-27). The law, which will secure billions in victim services, will take time to replenish the fund to 2018 levels. Because the federal VOCA fix will take time, we are asking our committed supporters like you for your assistance. You can make a difference, and no contribution is too small or insignificant. Here are actions you can take to help Resilience today:

  1. Take one minute to sign and share our CALL TO ACTION for Illinois lawmakers to increase General Revenue funding for sexual assault services. Share this call to action on your own social media.
  2. Share information about the cuts to Resilience’s VOCA in your own networks. Please click here to access talking points or use our printed or virtual flyer to share the news.
  3. Are you interested in sharing how rape crisis services made a difference in your healing? Make an ask to your legislator to increase General Revenue funding for sexual assault services and discuss the impact of these funding cuts. A sample letter can be found here; feel free to personalize it!
  4. Donate directly to Resilience today – any and every amount counts to help us help survivors in this time of need!
  5. Encourage others in your community and network to donate to Resilience today.

We will continue to provide our community and stakeholders with more information as it becomes available to us. In the meantime, we thank you for your support and solidarity during this time. No matter what comes, we will remain steadfast and united in our mission to support survivors of sexual violence. Please contact Sarah Layden at slayden@ourresilience.org for more information and ways you can support Resilience.