Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost has announced the distribution of $4.16 million in state grants to 32 rape crisis centers and agencies statewide.
The aid nearly triples the amount awarded in each of the past three years.
“Women who have lived through the horrific act of rape will now have access to expanded services in every corner of our state,” Yost said Tuesday. “This massive increase in funding to our local partners will improve lives moving forward.”
The increase is a result of the recently enacted state budget. The funding, awarded by the Crime Victim Services Section of the Ohio Attorney General’s Office and administered through Ohio’s Rape Crisis Program Trust Fund, had been about $1 million in fiscal years 2014 and 2015 and $1.43 million in fiscal years 2016, 2017 and 2018. The Ohio Alliance to End Sexual Violence, the coalition that supports the rape crisis centers around the state, reported that over those same years the number of counties providing rape crisis services increased and so did reports of sexual violence to law enforcement.
The 31 rape crisis centers across the state will each receive $120,774. They include the Rape Crisis Center of Medina and Summit Counties, Townhall II in Portage County, One Eighty in Wayne County and Compass Inc. (serving Stark, Tuscarawas and Coshocton counties).
In addition to the new grants to the rape crisis centers, the Ohio alliance will now receive a training and technical assistance award of $416,000, compared to the $142,500 it received last year.
“This increase will change the landscape of rape crisis services in our state and will positively impact the lives of thousands of Ohioans,” said Rosa Beltré, executive director of the Ohio alliance.