2011 REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS
SUBRECIPIENT PROJECT PERIOD: October 1, 2011 to September 30, 2012
WEBSITE TO APPLY: https://mdcrimevictims.egrant.net
OPTIONAL APPLICATION WEBINAR: 3:00 p.m. EST, May 24, 2011
DEADLINE TO APPLY: 8:00 p.m. EST, June 15, 2011
AWARD AMOUNT: up to $50,000
I. PROJECT GOAL
With funding from the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Office for Victims of Crime (OVC), the Maryland Crime Victims’ Resource Center, Inc. (MCVRC) was competitively selected to develop the Identity Theft Victims’ Network Project. This national-scope project seeks to expand and improve the outreach and capacity of victim service programs to better address the rights and needs of victims of identity theft nationwide. The existing victim support network is particularly limited in infrastructure, coordination, and training to assist identity theft crime victims. This project seeks to build the field’s capacity and help provide a coordinated response to the problem.
Each subrecipient will coordinate the establishment or enhancement of a collaborative regional, statewide, or community-based coalition dedicated to improving the community’s response to victims of identity theft. The subrecipient will work with coalition members to create, enhance, and deliver identity theft victim assistance training and outreach to improve the ability of its members to provide direct victim assistance services.
II. WHO IS ELIGIBLE TO APPLY
Applicants are limited to public or private victim serving entities, including nonprofit organizations, faith-based and community organizations, federally-recognized Indian tribal governments (as determined by the Secretary of the Interior), and units of local and state government. Commercial “for-profit” organizations and federal agencies are not eligible to apply. Up to nine (9) entities will be selected. At least two (2) of the nine (9) selected will be state or local systems-based entities (e.g., prosecutor and/or law enforcement-based agencies, Area Agencies on Aging, etc). MCVRC expects to subaward competitively-selected entities up to $50,000 for twelve months. The anticipated project period is October 1, 2011 to September 30, 2012.
Around 12 million or 5 percent of Americans over the age of 16 became identity theft victims in the two year period ending in June 2008. Financial identity theft is only part of the overall picture; over 600,000 victims experienced other types of identity theft, including:
- Criminal identity theft—providing another person’s name during an arrest;
- Medical identity theft—using the medical benefits of another to secure services;
- Employment identity theft—using a Social Security number of another to obtain employment;
- Family/Intergenerational identity theft—the perpetrator exploits his/her ready access to information pertaining to family members—domestic violence survivors, children, and the elderly may be particularly vulnerable; and
- Benefit fraud—using another’s identity to secure government supported benefits such as public assistance, housing subsidies, veterans’ benefits, etc.
The recovery process that identity theft victims face can be extremely challenging:
- 53% of victims feel moderate to severe distress from the identity theft.
- Recovering victims spent an average of $1,870 in out-of-pocket costs.
- Over 3 million experienced issues such as having utilities cut off, being arrested, finding erroneous claims on their health records, having child support garnished for children they never had, and being harassed by collection agencies.
Victims may need services, including legal assistance in civil matters and criminal cases, as well as advocacy and mental health counseling. Despite this need, the victim assistance support network, as it currently exists across the country, is particularly limited in its ability to provide quality services for this underserved category of victims.
Several OVC resources have been developed to address the service needs of identity theft victims, including:
- Online training courses: IdentityTheftVictimAssistanceOnlineTraining –SupportingVictims’ FinancialandEmotionalRecovery; and
- Electronic publication showcasing four model programs:ExpandingServicestoReachVictimsofIdentityTheftandFinancialFraud.
Collaborations across the country have brought together entities interacting with identity theft victims in a variety of capacities, to heighten public awareness, affect policy changes, improve communication and cooperation among coalition member agencies, increase responsiveness to victims, improve access to a wider range of services, and improve the amount and quality of service for victims. The success of these collaborations demonstrates the potential benefit of developing multi-disciplinary identity theft coalitions.
IV. PROJECT STRATEGY
The ultimate goals of this program are to: (1) provide support and guidance to statewide or regional identity theft victim assistance programs and coalitions in a network; (2) encourage the expansion of existing victim service programs and coalitions to address the rights and needs of this underserved population; and (3) offer guidance to victim service programs and coalitions on how they can improve their current service delivery portfolio at the local, state, and regional levels to better address the needs of and assistance to victims of identity theft.
MCVRC, in collaboration with OVC, intends to award subgrants to establish collaborative regional, statewide, or community coalitions dedicated to improving the response to victims of identity theft. The collaborative partner organizations and coalitions will work with MCVRC to establish a formal resource network of victim assistance providers in order to help these providers better address the rights and needs of victims of identity theft.
Applicants must be committed to developing a new or enhancing an existing identity theft coalition and receiving training and technical assistance. Each entity awarded funding will be responsible for developing or enhancing a coalition of victim serving agencies and organizations within a region. The coalition will be dedicated to developing strategies to address awareness of identity theft and better coordinated responses to identity theft victims. The subrecipient will manage financial and programmatic reporting requirements and ensure the overall success of the project’s goals.
Each applicant will be asked to clearly define the state or geographic region that their coalition will encompass. “Geographic regions” are defined as the combination of jurisdictions from a number of states, U.S. territories, and the District of Columbia, or multiple set of jurisdictions within or between states or U.S. territories.
Some applicants may elect to focus their efforts on a particular group of victims that share common traits such as age, income, or language. Some applicants may elect to focus their efforts on a particular identity theft crime type such as medical or intergenerational identity theft. Electing a particular victim population focus or crime type focus is optional.
The overall goal of each coalition is to expand victim service programs to better address the rights and needs of victims of identity theft. This goal of expanding services to identity theft victims may be achieved through various means, including but not limited to:
- Community outreach and public awareness campaigns;
- Improved inter-agency infrastructure, coordination, and referrals; and
- Education and training of service professionals within the geographic region.
Success in meeting the overall project goal will be measured in:
- Increased number of entities participating in the coalition;
- Increased attendance of coalition members;
- Increased level of collaboration amongst members;
- Increased number of identity theft victims served within the geographic region by coalition members or their partners (by type of identity theft);
- Increased types of services provided within the geographic region by coalition members or their partners (by type: legal assistance, counseling, etc.);
- Increased number of advocates, volunteers, and service providers trained to assist identity theft victims within the geographic area (by type of trainee);
- Increase in percent of trainees completing evaluations;
- Increase in percent of trainees reporting on evaluations an improved ability to perform their duties; and
- Ability to sustain the coalition beyond the subrecipient period.
MCVRC and OVC will work to ensure that federal agencies such as the Federal Trade Commission are invited to participate in the coalitions’ efforts. Partners to consider for coalition membership could include:
- Academic Institutions
- Attorney General Offices
- Bar Associations
- Better Business Bureau/Industry Regulatory Commissions
- Business Networking Groups/Trade Associations
- Child Service Organizations
- Consumer Groups/Coalitions
- Data Breech Specialists/Cyber Security Professionals/Internet Providers
- Domestic and Sexual Violence Organizations
- Emergency Responder Agencies
- Faith-Based Organizations and Coalitions
- Financial/Banking Entities
- Government Representatives (Federal, State, and Local)
- Identity Theft Victim Representative
- Judicial Agencies (Federal, State, and Local)
- Law Enforcement Agencies
- Legal Clinics/Legal Assistance Providers/Law Firms Agreeing to Provide Pro Bono Assistance to Identity Theft Victims
- Media Representatives
- Medical & Health Care Entities
- Motor Vehicle Administrations
- Prosecutors (Federal, State, and Local)
- Senior Service Organizations
- State VOCA Administrators
- Task Force Representatives
- Victim Service Agencies
V. PROJECT SERVICES & REQUIREMENTS
MCVRC anticipates providing (at no cost to the subrecipient):
- National HUB coordination by providing technical assistance, training, oversight, and guidance to each coalition. The overall training and support strategy will be based upon the needs of the subrecipients and may include periodic webinars, dissemination of materials such as train-the-trainer modules, assistance in coalition website content development, and the opportunity for subrecipients to discuss with one another via teleconference and social media ways to maximize success and overcome challenges.
- A 2-3 day training and orientation conference for subrecipients in the Baltimore/Washington, D.C. region, anticipated in the first month of the grant period. This training will develop subrecipients’ knowledge and skills in the following areas:
- Subject Matter—develop a deeper understanding of issues facing identity theft victims and how to meet their needs;
- Coalition Building—discuss how to collaborate to develop and sustain effective partnerships and networks, including identifying and reaching out to potential coalition members and partners; and
- Grant Requirements—how to meet financial and programmatic requirements.
- One (1) on-site visit, to include:
- Day One: a training workshop to the assembled coalition within six (6) months of the award. In this interactive session, coalition members will deepen skills in collaboration, coalition building, strategic planning and sustainability, and victims’ rights and services.
- Day Two: a private meeting with subrecipient entity to provide training, assist the agency in connecting and forming linkages with community and governmental agencies, and ensure compliance with grant requirements.
Subrecipients should anticipate the need to:
- Demonstrate the capacity to coordinate a statewide or regional coalition;
- Have the financial resources to pay for program costs before receiving reimbursement;
- Participate in a mandatory two to three (2-3) day subrecipient conference presented by MCVRC in the Baltimore/Washington, D.C. region within the first month of the subrecipient period;
- Host HUB trainers at (a) the on-site training workshop during a coalition gathering and (b) the private visit with the subrecipient entity. (One visit to the region will be coordinated for both events. Subrecipient will not be responsible for trainers’ travel expenses or arrangements, but will need to assemble participants for the meeting and host MCVRC on-site at the entity’s location);
- Participate in regular subrecipient teleconferences;
- Be responsible for conducting regular coalition meetings;
- Prepare and submit programmatic and financial reports to MCVRC;
- Participate in evaluation activities to be conducted by the project evaluator, including collecting applicable data;
- Report award information including the names and total compensation of the five (5) most highly compensated executives of the entity, as consistent with the Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2006 (FFATA)—each subrecipient must ensure that it has the necessary processes and systems in place to comply with the FFATA reporting requirements;
- Comply with all applicable federal statutes including those concerning non-discrimination, drug abuse, and prohibition against using federal funds to influence or attempt to influence members of Congress; and
- Create and submit a sustainability plan to continue efforts to maintain an effective coalition beyond the grant period.
VI. APPLICATION PROCESS
Submission Method: Applications must be submitted at:https://mdcrimevictims.egrant.net. The system allows applicants to create a profile and save work; applicants are encouraged to familiarize themselves with the system in advance of the deadline. For assistance, email email@example.com, call 1-877-VICTIM1 or visit the FAQs’ page.
Application sections include:
A) Organizational Profile
B) Project Narrative
Abstract (5 points)
Problem Statement/Statement of Need (10 points)
Project Strategy/Design (35 points)
Organizational Capacity (20 points)
Sustainability (15 points)
C) Budget & Budget Narrative (15 points)
D) MOUs/Letters of Intent to Participate PDF Attachment Upload
E) Assurances & Final Submission Page
Review Process: Applications will be peer reviewed and scored. MCVRC staff will review and determine final recommendations to OVC. OVC will make the final selections and notify MCVRC accordingly. Applicants are scheduled to be notified in September 2011.
Acceptance Process: MCVRC will require subrecipients to sign an award acceptance notice, and may require subrecipients to modify the scope of work and/or budgets as a condition of the award, before commencement of the grant.
Langton, L. & Planty, M. (2010). Bureau of Justice Statistics Special Report, National Crime Victim Victimization Survey Supplement, Victims of Identity Theft 2008. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Bureau of Justice Statistics. Through http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/index.cfm?ty=tp&tid=42.
Synovate (2007). Federal Trade Commission—2006 Identity Theft Survey Report. McLean, VA. Through http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2007/11/idtheft.shtm.