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Fiscal Year 2017 Funding for DNA Analysis, Capacity Enhancement, and Other Forensic Activities

NCJ Number
Gerald LaPorte; Heather Waltke; Charles Heurich; Ruby J. Chase
Date Published
April 2018
20 pages
This report's purpose is to indicate how the U.S. Justice Department's National Institute of Justice (NIJ) invested its Fiscal Year 2017 funding ($97.4 million) in DNA and other forensic program activities, as well as the positive impact these efforts have had on the criminal justice system.
NIJ supports the direct funding of state and local forensic laboratories with three programs. They are the DNA Capacity Enhancement and Backlog Reduction (DNA CEBR) program; the DNA Laboratory Efficiency Improvement and Capacity Enhancement DNA EI&CE) program; and the Sexual Assault Forensic Evidence - Inventory, Tracking and Reporting (SAFE-ITR) program. NIJ support and and funding for the activities of each of these programs is summarized. All of these programs have the overarching purpose of assisting recipients with increasing the capacity to perform forensic testing and increasing the quality of the forensic results in their laboratories, along with ensuring accountability and transparency. NIJ also funds technical assistance for law enforcement agencies and forensic science laboratories. Such work is done through the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUs), the Forensic Technology Center of Excellence (FTCoE), and the Strengthening the Medical Examiner-Coroner System Program. Overall, NIJ is committed to a strategy that couples rigorous research and development with capacity enhancement and technical assistance. This investment not only serves the needs of law enforcement and forensic science communities, but also furthers the priorities of the U.S. Justice Department's mission to reduce violent crime, support prosecutors' efforts, and advance new technologies and strategies to counter the opioid epidemic. 2 figures, 1 table, and 26 notes