FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                    VAWO

FRIDAY, JUNE 8, 2001                                                                                             202/307-0703

 

JUSTICE DEPARTMENT AWARDS KENTUCKY $1.7 MILLION

TO COMBAT VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN

 

WASHINGTON, DC - Attorney General Ashcroft announced today that the Justice Department is awarding $1.7 million to Kentucky to prevent and respond to violence against women, as part of this year’s STOP (Services, Training, Officers and Prosecutors) Violence Against Women Formula Grants Program.  This program is funded under the Violence Against  Women Act (VAWA).

“No American should feel outside the protection of the law, or beyond the reach of the law.  The STOP program supports communities that champion victims’ rights and develops coordinated responses to violence against women,” said Attorney General Ashcroft. “The funds will give law enforcement and victim services the resources they need to do a better job of  investigating, prosecuting and preventing crimes against women.  We must continue to provide our communities with the resources to hold offenders accountable and to meet the needs of victims.”

STOP funds are used to promote partnerships among law enforcement, prosecution, the courts and victim advocates to ensure victim safety and accountability for offenders.

The Justice Department has awarded Kentucky over $10.4 million in STOP funds since 1995, for total funding exceeding $17.4 million under the VAWA grant programs since the enactment of the VAWA legislation in 1994.  In the President’s FY 2002 budget request, the Justice Department seeks $390 million in overall VAWA funding, a $102.52 million increase over FY 2001.

Through this funding, states and communities are urged to restructure and strengthen the criminal justice system response to domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking, utilizing the expertise of all participants working in the system, including victim advocates.

 

Kentucky continues to fund projects that address identified needs and improve the criminal justice system’s response to violent crimes against women.          

Current project priorities emphasize:

·                      Providing services for adult female victims of violent crime, which include domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking;

·                      Strengthening the coordinated efforts of partner agencies in responding to domestic violence and sexual assault;

·                      Focusing on special considerations to projects in rural communities, particularly the Appalachian area of Eastern Kentucky; and

·                      Developing and implementing statewide training initiatives for law enforcement officers, prosecutors, victims’ advocates, judges and other victim service providers regarding domestic violence.

The STOP Program is authorized under the Violence Against Women Acts of 1994 and 2000. The STOP grants are awarded by the Office of Justice Programs’ (OJP) Violence Against Women Office (VAWO) to designated state agencies, which must award 25 percent of the funds  they receive to law enforcement, 25 percent to prosecution, 30 percent to victim services,  5 percent to courts and 15 percent at the state’s discretion for other STOP program purposes. For information about the Kentucky STOP grant, contact Donna Langley, Program Coordinator, Kentucky Justice Cabinet, at 502/564-3251.  Information about the STOP program and other initiatives involving violence against women issues is available on VAWO’s Website at www.ojp.usdoj.gov/vawo or OJP’s Website at www.ojp.usdoj.gov, or by calling the National Criminal Justice Reference Service toll-free at 800/851-3420.

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After hours contact: Angela Harless on 202/616-3266 or pager #888/763-8943