WORCESTER – The YWCA of Central Massachusetts has received more than $370,000 for the U.S. Justice Department’s Office of Justice Programs to provide housing and other services to victims of human trafficking.
The announcement was made on Tuesday. The YWCA of Central Mass. is among 73 organizations across the country — and the only organization in the state — to receive such a grant.
“Doing justice means supporting the survivors of human trafficking, not just prosecuting the criminals who victimize them,” said United States Attorney Lelling. “The [YWCA] of Central Massachusetts is doing righteous work by equipping survivors with the resources and help they need to rebuild their lives.”
The grant will provide six to 24 months of transitional or short-term housing assistance to the trafficking victims, including rental, utilities or related expenses, such as security deposits and relocation costs.
The grant will also provide funding for support needed to help victims locate permanent housing, secure employment, as well as occupational training and counseling.
“Human trafficking is a barbaric criminal enterprise that subjects its victims to unspeakable cruelty and deprives them of the most basic of human needs, none more essential than a safe place to live,” said Attorney General William P. Barr. “Throughout this Administration, the Department of Justice has fought aggressively to bring human traffickers to justice and to deliver critical aid to trafficking survivors. These new resources, announced today, expand on our efforts to offer those who have suffered the shelter and support they need to begin a new and better life.”
“Human traffickers dangle the threat of homelessness over those they have entrapped, playing a ruthless game of psychological manipulation that victims are never in a position to win,” said OJP Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Kathrine T. Sullivan. “These grants will empower survivors on their path to independence and a life of self-sufficiency and hope.”
Editors Note: The original version of this story incorrectly stated the YMCA as the grant recipient.
Photo Courtesy: YWCA of Central Massachusetts/Facebook