DOJ Touts Success of Violence Against Women Aid

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The U.S. Justice Department’s Office for Violence Against Women sent Congress a report detailing how it has spent more than $225 million in grants in each of the last three years. The agency contended that over the past two decades, its “funding has transformed how criminal justice systems in many communities respond to domestic and sexual violence.” It cited such programs as law enforcement collaboration with victim services providers and health care professionals, use of evidence-based lethality assessments to curb domestic violence-related homicides, improved forensic medical examinations for sexual assault victims, and investigation and prosecution policies and practices that focus on the offender and account for the effects of trauma on victims.

Grantees funded under the program said they provided more than one million services to victims and their families, made 66,095 arrests, including 7,367 for protection order violations, and that prosecutors disposed of 125,812 cases, of which 55 percent resulted in convictions. Last year, the conservative Heritage Foundation called for the elimination of Violence Against Women grants, saying that “these services should be funded and implemented locally” and that the grants “have not undergone nationally representative, scientifically rigorous experimental evaluations of effectiveness.”

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