Governor Earl Ray Tomblin, joined by a domestic violence survivor and now victims' advocate, today announced 25 projects have been awarded a total of $1,071,794 in STOP Violence Against Women Grant Program funds.
"These grants are for people like Roger Lockridge. When Roger was just a boy, police brought him, his siblings and mother to safety after a domestic violence incident," Gov. Tomblin said. "Today, Roger advocates for children at a local center in Lewisburg. I am pleased to be able to present these grants to people like Roger, and the programs they work for, so that the victims can find the help they need."
"These grants are very important on multiple levels. It is not only women, but also their children, that benefit from the grants that are given to help those that work against domestic violence. I am living proof of this," Roger Lockridge said. "If my mother didn't have anyone or a group to help her, there is a good chance I wouldn't be here today. Because of the shelter we stayed at, the staff that worked extremely hard, and the money from the grants that funded it all, our lives were saved and I was able to join in the cause myself later on in my life."
The purpose of the grant program is to establish or enhance teams whose core members include victim service providers, law enforcement, and prosecution to improve the criminal justice system's response to violence against women. Grants provide personnel, equipment, training, technical assistance, and information systems for the establishment or enhancement of these teams. Additionally, statewide projects are funded to provide training and educational opportunities for all victim service providers, law enforcement, prosecution, and court personnel throughout the state.
STOP funds are awarded from the Office on Violence Against Women, Office of the U.S. Department of Justice. The funds are administered by the Division of Justice and Community Services.