U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer and U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand today announced $2,400,000 in federal funding for four organizations in New York City that provide legal services to survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence. The funding was allocated through the U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Legal Assistance for Victims Grant (LAV) Program. Specifically, the Northern Manhattan Improvement Corporation, Sanctuary for Families, Inc., New York Legal Assistance Group, Inc., and New York City Gay and Lesbian Anti-Violence Project, Inc. will each receive $600,000 to offer legal assistance for free or little to no cost to survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence, and stalking.
“This federal funding will provide invaluable legal services to survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence in New York City. We must send an unequivocal message that sexual and domestic violence will not be tolerated and we must do everything we can to both prevent it in the first place and support survivors of these horrific crimes,” said Senator Schumer. “I am pleased that the Department of Justice has awarded this funding to four organizations in New York City, and I will continue fighting to ensure that all survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault have the services and support they need.”
“Sexual assault and domestic violence are devastating problems, and we must do everything we can to support survivors as they seek assistance,” said Senator Gillibrand. “This critical funding will allow organizations to help survivors across New York City as they navigate the complex legal system and seek justice. I will continue fighting in the Senate for the resources that help protect survivors.”
VAWA continues to provide essential support to victims, survivors and communities to ensure they have the legal tools and resources necessary to seek justice and receive care.
“VAWA continues to provide essential support to victims, survivors and communities to ensure they have the legal tools and resources necessary to seek justice and receive care. This grant funding with help organizations like the Northern Manhattan Improvement Corporate (NMIC) in their efforts to continue to provide vital resources and support for victims, survivors and their families,” said Rep. Adriano Espaillat (D-NY-13).
Latinx survivors in Upper Manhattan and the Bronx – communities that struggle with domestic violence rates 26% higher than in the rest of New York City.
“Victims of domestic violence and their families face numerous obstacles to escape the horrors of abuse. NMIC is proud to build a new partnership with the Violence Intervention Project (VIP) to provide critical legal and social services to the low-income, Latinx survivors in Upper Manhattan and the Bronx – communities that struggle with domestic violence rates 26% higher than in the rest of New York City. These critical legal and social services will provide the foundation for survivors and their families to heal and move toward self-sufficiency,” said Maria Lizardo, Executive Director, Northern Manhattan Improvement Corporation.
“Sanctuary for Families, New York State’s largest nonprofit provider of comprehensive services for survivors of gender violence, is profoundly grateful to the U.S. Office on Violence Against Women for its sustained commitment to life-saving legal services for abuse survivors. For more than 20 years, Sanctuary’s Courtroom Advocates Project (CAP) – with OVW’s longtime support – has helped thousands of survivors navigate the often-bewildering halls of Family Court to obtain orders of protection and other legal resources that help them achieve safety and freedom from abuse. More recently, CAP has begun providing vital legal services to survivors of campus sexual assault, helping them access justice in this deeply under-resourced legal area. We are grateful to Senators Schumer and Gillibrand for their commitment to ending gender violence and for ensuring critical resources are made available to survivors,” said Hon. Judy Harris Kluger, Executive Director, Sanctuary for Families.
“We are incredibly grateful to receive funding through the Department of Justice Office on Violence Against Women to provide civil legal services to immigrant survivors of domestic violence,” said Lisa Rivera, Managing Attorney, New York Legal Assistance Group (NYLAG). “This funding is a critical lifeline for survivors to obtain the expert assistance they need to rebuild their lives free from violence. Since its passage in 1994, the Violence Against Women Act has provided support to give victims, particularly those from traditionally underserved populations, access to services that are accessible and culturally competent to meet their needs. We are grateful to Senators Schumer and Gillibrand for their leadership on this issue and for supporting this work.”
“The New York City Anti-Violence Project (AVP) is grateful to receive our third cycle of funding from the Office on Violence Against Women’s Legal Assistance for Victims Grant, supporting our work with LGBTQ survivors of intimate partner and sexual violence. AVP was instrumental in VAWA’s reauthorization in 2013, specifically in including LGBTQ survivors and in establishing non-discrimination language that includes our communities. We have seen an increase in the number of LGBTQ survivors of all types of violence in these turbulent times, including intimate partner and sexual violence. The renewal of this grant ensures we will be able to provide holistic legal representation to these survivors, including undocumented survivors who are married to an abusive U.S. Citizen, or those who are survivors of trafficking. This funding will help AVP to continue to meet the needs of LGBTQ survivors of intimate partner and sexual violence,” said Virginia Goggin, Director of Legal Services, New York City Anti-Violence Project.
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A breakdown and description of the federal grant awards for New York City are below (Harlem/Uptown location highlighted).
The Department of Justice Office on Violence Against Women’s Legal Assistance for Victims Grant (LAV) Program works to implement certain provisions of the Violence Against Women Act. It is designed to increase the availability of civil and criminal legal assistance programs for adult and youth victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking who are seeking relief in legal matters relating to or arising out of that abuse or violence, at minimal or no cost to the victims.
More information can be found here.