Lofgren Announces Over $1.5 Million in Grants for Domestic Violence Programs

September 30, 2005
Press Release
Media Contact: David Thomas, 202.225.3072     

Congresswoman Lofgren (D- San Jose) today announced that the County of Santa Clara and the Santa Clara County Social Services Agency have been awarded over $1.5 million dollars in grant money from the Department of Justice to combat domestic violence.  The grants will be used to continue and expand programs that encourage pro-arrest policies and provide coordinated community response programs for victims of domestic violence.

The grant announcement comes on the heels of approval by the House of the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2005 on Wednesday.  The VAWA Reauthorization was passed as part of the Department of Justice Appropriations Authorization Act, HR 3402, by a 415-4 vote, and contained much of the language from the VAWA 2005 Reauthorization Act introduced by Congresswoman Lofgren earlier this year.  For more information on Congresswoman Lofgren’s bill for VAWA reauthorization, please visit: http://www.house.govpr_053005_VAWA.html.

“Preventing and responding to domestic violence is an important responsibility of society, and I am pleased that the House voted to reauthorize this important legislation” said Congresswoman Lofgren.  “However, it is not enough to pass legislation like the Violence Against Women Act into law, it is also imperative that the government supply funding to implement these programs.  These programs can make a difference- since VAWA was passed in 1994, Santa Clara County has seen a thirty percent reduction in reported domestic violence incidents.  By providing a comprehensive response team for victims of domestic violence, and expanding the language capabilities of our service providers, I am hopeful that we can eradicate domestic violence in the Santa Clara Valley community.”

The $1,184,945 dollar grant to Santa Clara County will help the County to fulfill provisions of the Violence Against Women Act, which was initially passed in 1994 and renewed in 2000.  The grant will allow the county to maintain the Domestic Violence Response Team program, which provides an immediate response team consisting of an officer, a victim advocate, and a social worker.  The grant will also be used to expand the Victim Advocacy program to include an additional bilingual Spanish-English advocate, and expand outreach to Asian immigrant victims by hiring three additional advocates for the Language Bank program.  Additionally, with this funding Santa Clara County will continue to provide domestic violence victims access to legal advocacy; and will conduct a safety and accountability audit of the Santa Clara County criminal justice system.

The $350,000 dollar grant to the Santa Clara County Social Services Agency will fund the fifth and final year of the Green Book Initiative, a program which creates and enhances collaborations among domestic violence service providers and the criminal justice system.  During this implementation and evaluation phase, the program will work to ensure that every adult victim and child has an advocate, and that the coordinated services are culturally competent and relevant.

Project partners include the Santa Clara County Office of Sherriff, the Santa Clara County Superior Court, the Gilroy Police Department, the Los Altos Police Department, the Morgan Hill Police Department, the Mountain View Police Department, the Palo Alto Police Department, Sunnyvale Public Safety, Asian Americans for Community Involvement, Community Solutions, Maitri, Next Door Solutions to Domestic Violence, and the Support Network for Battered Women.