WASHINGTON, D.C.—New Jersey lawmakers announced that three organizations that serve victims of domestic violence, including two based in New Brunswick, would share $1.1 million in federal funding. The money, authorized by the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), supports programs that provide housing to victims of abuse and programs that address domestic violence and sexual assault in ways that respect and affirm the victim’s culture.
“This federal funding will help New Jersey organizations provide critical assistance and housing for New Jersey domestic violence and sexual abuse victims,” said U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ).
“These grants made possible by the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) enable community organizations, including two in my district in New Brunswick, to continue to provide life-saving support to victims of domestic violence,” said U.S. Rep. Frank Pallone (D-NJ-6).
The following New Jersey organizations received federal funding:
- Manavia, Inc. in New Brunswick – $535,115 for culturally and linguistically specific services and transitional housing for victims of abuse;
- Jewish Family Service & Children’s Center in Clifton – $297,000 for culturally and linguistically specific services; and
- Women Aware, Inc. in New Brunswick – $299,678 for transitional housing for victims of abuse.
In New Jersey, more than 74,000 domestic violence offenses were reported by the police in 2010, and since 2006, nearly $30 million in federal funding has been provided to more than 40 domestic violence programs in New Jersey through the Violence Against Women Act.
The Violence Against Women Act was originally enacted in 1994 and has been reauthorized twice—in 2000 and 2005—with unanimous Senate approval. After the most recent extension expired in 2011, the Senate passed a reauthorization bill in April 2012, but the House has refused to consider the bipartisan Senate bill. The law provides federal funding for programs and initiatives designed to help victims, and reauthorization is necessary to ensure that local communities and law enforcement agencies get the full resources they need to fight domestic violence.
“This funding underscores why we need House Republicans to put politics aside and work with us to renew and strengthen the Violence Against Women Act,” said U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ), who successfully fought for bipartisan passage in the Senate of its reauthorization earlier this year. “We must do everything we can to protect victims of domestic violence and their children and that means fighting to fund these critical services and programs.”