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State of Delaware
Criminal Justice Council




Violence Against Women Act Basic Facts


Known as the STOP Violence Against Women Formula and Discretionary Grant Program

Intent of the Act was the reduction of violence against women.

Problems identified by DOJ which led to this program:

  1. Tremendous number of incidents of violent crimes against women, many of which are often hidden and under-reported.
  2. Only recently has society begun to view violence against women as a serious criminal problem
  3. The current CJ and Victim services efforts are not coordinated or sufficient for this problem

Eligibility Requirements:

  1. States must demonstrate how they will distribute the grant funds each year:
    • At least 30% will be allocated to non-profit, non-governmental victim services, of which at least 10% must be distributed to culturally specific community-based organizations
    • At least 5% will be allocated to the courts
    • At least 25% will be allocated for law enforcement
    • At least 25% will be allocated for prosecution
    • 15% of the funds may be for Discretionary projects that fall under the Statutory Purpose Areas
  2. Priority must be given to areas of varying geographic size and areas with the greatest showing of need within the State. Need is based upon the population and the availability of existing domestic violence and sexual assault programs in the population and geographic areas to be served. There must be equitable distribution:
    • Urban, non-urban, and rural
    • Previously underserved due to:
      • geographic location
      • racial or ethnic barriers
      • language barriers or
      • physical disabilities
  3. States shall certify that they will incur the full out-of-pocket costs for forensic medical examinations involving sexual assault victims. Victims must also not bear the costs associated with filing of criminal charges, or warrant charges, or protection order charges, or subpoena charges.
  4. States are required to consult and coordinate with non-profit, non-governmental victim services programs, including sexual assault and domestic violence victim services programs.

Under VAWA 2013, not less than 20 % of the total funds granted to a state shall be allocated for programs or projects in 2 more allocations (victim services, courts, law enforcement and prosecution) that meaningfully address sexual assault, including strange rape, acquaintance rape, alcohol or drug-facilitated rape, and rape within the context of an intimate partner relationship.

Twenty Purpose Areas:

  1. Training for law enforcement officers and prosecutors to identify and respond more effectively to violent crimes against women, including crimes of sexual assault and domestic violence;
  2. Developing, training, or expanding units of law enforcement officers and prosecutors that specifically target violent crimes against women;
  3. Developing and implementing more effective police and prosecution policies and services for preventing and responding to violent crimes against women;
  4. Developing, installing, or expanding data collection and communication systems, including computerized systems, linking police, prosecutors, and courts or for the purpose of identifying, classifying, and tracking arrests, protection orders, violations of protection orders, prosecutions, and convictions for violent crimes against women, including the crimes of sexual assault, dating violence, stalking, and domestic violence;
  5. Developing, enlarging, or strengthening victim services and legal assistance programs, including sexual assault, domestic violence, stalking, and dating violence programs, developing or improving delivery of victim services to underserved populations, providing specialized domestic violence court advocates in courts where a significant number of protection orders are granted, and increasing reporting and reducing attrition rates for cases involving violent crimes against women, including crimes of sexual assault, dating violence, stalking, and domestic violence;
  6. Developing, enlarging, or strengthening programs addressing the needs and circumstances of Indian tribes in dealing with violent crimes against women, including the crimes of sexual assault, dating violence, stalking, and domestic violence;
  7. Supporting formal and informal statewide, multidisciplinary efforts, to the extent not supported by State funds, to coordinate the response of state law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, courts, victim services agencies, and other state agencies and departments, to violent crimes against women, including the crimes of sexual assault, domestic violence, stalking, and dating violence;
  8. Training of sexual assault forensic medical personnel examiners in the collection and preservation of evidence, analysis, prevention, and providing expert testimony and treatment of trauma related to sexual assault;
  9. Developing, enlarging, or strengthening programs to assist law enforcement, prosecutors, courts, and others to address the needs and circumstances of older and disabled women who are victims of domestic violence, dating violence, stalking, or sexual assault, including recognizing, investigating, and prosecuting instances of such violence or assault and targeting outreach and support, counseling, and other victim services to such older and disabled individuals;
  10. Providing assistance to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault in immigration matters;
  11. Maintaining core victim services and criminal justice initiatives, while supporting complementary new initiatives and emergency services for victims and their families;
  12. Supporting the placement of special victim assistants (to be known as “Jessica Gonzales Victim Assistants”) in local law enforcement agencies to serve as liaisons between victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking and personnel in local law enforcement agencies in order to improve the enforcement of protection orders. Jessica Gonzales Victim Assistants shall have expertise in domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking and may undertake the following activities;
    •   developing, in collaboration with prosecutors, courts, and victim service providers, standardized response policies for local law enforcement agencies, including the use of evidence-based indicators to assess the risk of domestic and dating violence homicide and prioritize dangerous or potentially lethal cases;
    •   notifying persons seeking enforcement of protection orders as to what responses will be provided by the relevant law enforcement agency;
    •   referring persons seeking enforcement of protection orders to supplementary services (such as emergency shelter programs, hotlines, or legal assistance services); and
    •   taking other appropriate action to assist or secure the safety of the person seeking enforcement of a protection order.
  13. Providing funding to law enforcement agencies, victim services providers, and state, tribal, territorial, and local governments (which funding stream shall be known as the Crystal Judson Domestic Violence Protocol Program) to promote—
    •   the development and implementation of training for local victim domestic violence service providers, and to fund victim services personnel, to be known as “Crystal Judson Victim Advocates,” to provide supportive services and advocacy for victims of domestic violence committed by law enforcement personnel;
    •   the implementation of protocols within law enforcement agencies to ensure consistent and effective responses to the commission of domestic violence by personnel within such agencies such as the model policy promulgated by the International Association of Chiefs of Police (“Domestic Violence by Police Officers: A Policy of the IACP, Police Response to Violence Against Women Project” July 2003); and
    •   the development of such protocols in collaboration with state, tribal, territorial and local victim services providers and domestic violence coalitions.
  14. Developing and promoting state, local, or tribal legislation and policies that enhance best practices for responding to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking.
  15. Developing, implementing, or enhancing Sexual Assault Response Teams, or other similar coordinated community responses to sexual assault.
  16. Developing and strengthening policies, protocols, best practices, and training for law enforcement agencies and prosecutors relating to the investigation and prosecution of sexual assault cases and the appropriate treatment of victims
  17. Developing, enlarging or strengthening programs addressing sexual assault against men, women, and youth in correctional or detention settings.
  18. Identifying and conducting inventories of backlogs of sexual assault evidence collection kits and developing protocols and policies for responding to and addressing such backlogs, including protocols and policies for notifying and involving victims.
  19. Developing, enlarging, or strengthening programs and projects to provide services and responses to male and female victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking, whose ability to access traditional services and responses is affected by their sexual orientation or gender identity, as defined in section 249(c) of title 18, United States Code.
  20. Developing, enhancing, or strengthening prevention and educational programming to address domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking, with not more than 5 percent of the amount allocated to a state to be used for this purpose.

Note: Any law enforcement, state, tribal, territorial, or local government agency receiving funding under the Crystal Judson Domestic Violence Protocol Program shall, on an annual basis, receive additional training on the topic of incidents of domestic violence committed by law enforcement personnel from domestic violence and sexual assault nonprofit organizations and, after a period of two years, provide a report of the adopted protocol to the Department, including a summary of progress in implementing such protocol. As such, states and territories are responsible for ensuring that each subgrantee receiving funds under this purpose area will receive the required annual training. states are also responsible for ensuring that subgrantees submit their two-year report to the Department. States and territories must notify and provide OVW with a list of subgrantee recipients awarded STOP funds under the Crystal Judson Domestic Violence Protocol Program.

 

“The Violence Against Women’s Act reflects a firm commitment towards working to change the criminal justice system’s response to violence that occurs when any woman is threatened or assaulted by someone with whom she has had an intimate relationship, with whom she was previously acquainted, or who is a stranger. By committing significant federal resources and attention to restructuring and strengthening the criminal justice response to women who have been or potentially could be victimized by violence, we can more effectively ensure the safety of all women.” OJP’s STOP Manual

$26 million appropriated nationally in FY 1995

$800,000 to Delaware in FY99


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