The U.S. Department of Justice Office of Justice Programs (OJP) has been directed to implement or oversee programs and services that are of specific interest to SAAs. Established by the Justice Assistance Act of 1984 and reauthorized in 1988, OJP provides federal leadership in developing the nation’s capacity to prevent and control crime, administer justice, and assist crime victims. OJP provides innovative leadership to federal, state, local, and tribal justice systems, by disseminating current knowledge and practices and providing grants for the implementation of these crime fighting strategies. Because most of the responsibility for crime control and prevention falls to states, cities, and local units of government, the federal government can be effective in these areas only to the extent that it can enter into partnerships with these entities. Therefore, OJP does not directly carry out law enforcement and justice activities and related services. Instead, OJP works in partnership with the justice community to identify the most pressing challenges confronting the justice system and to provide information, training, coordination, and innovative strategies and approaches to address these challenges.
Implement national and multi-state programs, provide training and technical assistance, and establish demonstration programs to assist tribal, local, and state governments and community groups in reducing crime, enforcing local and state drug laws, and improving the function of the criminal justice system.
Collect, analyze, publish, and disseminate statistical information on crime, criminal offenders, victims of crime, and the operations of justice systems at all levels of government. Enhance the quality, completeness, and accessibility of the nation’s criminal history records system.
Sponsor research in crime and criminal justice and evaluations of justice programs. Disseminate research findings to practitioners and policymakers.
Support the development, testing, evaluation, adoption, and implementation of new and innovative technologies and techniques to support and enhance law enforcement, courts, and/or corrections options.
Provide national leadership, direction, coordination, and resources to prevent, treat, and control juvenile violence and delinquency; improve the effectiveness and fairness of the juvenile justice system; and combat the problem of missing and exploited children.
Enhance the nation’s capacity to assist crime victims and provide leadership in changing attitudes, policies, and practices to promote justice and healing for all victims of crime.
Provide targeted federal leadership to help tribal, local, and state governments advance and sustain public safety at the local level through the leveraging of both technical and financial resources and the development and implementation of community-based strategies.
The Office of Justice Programs (OJP) is led by the Assistant Attorney General, who assists the Department of Justice leadership in implementing Department policies and programs, and promotes coordination among the OJP bureaus and offices. OJP reports to the Department of Justice's Associate Attorney General.
Program Bureaus and Offices
Through the programs developed and funded by its bureaus and offices, OJP administers a mix of formula and discretionary grant programs and provides targeted training and technical assistance on evidence-based programs and practices. Although OJP provides some direct research and technical assistance, much of its work is accomplished through federal financial assistance to scholars, practitioners, experts, and state and local governments and agencies.
Many OJP bureaus and program offices award formula grants to state agencies, which in turn subgrant funds to units of state and local government. Formula grant programs, in areas such as drug control and criminal justice system improvement, juvenile justice, victims’ compensation, and victims’ assistance, are administered by SAAs designated by each state’s governor. Discretionary grant funds are announced in the Federal Register or through solicitations found on OJP’s website and are competitively awarded to a variety of state, local, private, and nonprofit organizations.
Below are the six OJP program bureaus and offices. Each provides funding or services that can strengthen the work of SAAs. (View an organizational chart).
Bureaus and Offices
Training and Technical Assistance (TTA)
Visit the Training and Technical Assistance section for more information about TTA providers.