Homeland Security Grants Rigged to Favor Religious Groups

Wednesday, July 27, 2011
(graphic: silvermonthly.com)
Non-profits can seek financial assistance from the Department of Homeland Security for buttressing their operations against terrorist attacks. But religious-oriented groups have the best shot of receiving funding from the Urban Areas Security Initiative Nonprofit Security Grant Program, based on how applications are weighed.
Applicants must answer 12 questions, with a possible high score of 40 that determines those most eligible for the $19 million in grants. A multiplier is also factored in—a multiplier that heavily favors any non-profit with a religious affiliation.
For example, a religious group could score a paltry 13 on the questions, but still wind up with a near perfect score of 39, because the multiplier triples the totals of applicants that are part of a church.
Medical and educational institutions also enjoy a multiplier, but theirs will only double the score.
For all other non-profits, forget about it, writes Andre Francisco at the Project on Government Oversight.
“That’s bad news for nonprofits that aren’t affiliated with a religion, but it’s potentially worse for taxpayers, because taxpayer-funded grants might be going to organizations with inferior proposals just because they are religiously affiliated,” says Francisco. “Furthermore, communities with high-risk organizations might lose out on funding to protect them from terrorism because of a rule giving a significant advantage to religiously-affiliated groups.”
-Noel Brinkerhoff
Faith-Based Math Deciding Millions in Homeland Security Grants (by Andre Francisco, Project on Government Oversight)
Urban Areas Security Initiative Nonprofit Security Grant Program (page 19, Department of Homeland Security) (pdf)


Michael Pedersen 12 years ago
separation of church and state? is there a court case pending yet?

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