Attorney General Eric Holder (pictured) announced Monday a new grant program aimed at bolstering efforts to prevent domestic violence homicides. The Justice Department will give a combined total of $2.6 million in grants to four sites to implement a two-year model of reduction of the homicides.
The sites that have been selected are: Pitt County, North Carolina; Cuyahoga County, Ohio; Contra Costa County, California; and the Borough of Brooklyn, New York. The grants will fund screening models and evidence-based strategies that will aid in identifying potentially lethal actions by spouses, unveil ways to scale down the violence, and end the occurrence of death in these matters. The National Institute of Justice will evaluate the models in the respective areas and use the data collected to form nationwide domestic violence homicide prevention models.
“Domestic violence is more than a crime against just the victim,” said Attorney General Holder in a video message posted on the Justice Department’s website. “It is a crime against all of us as a society. And our collective response must treat it as such.”
A portion of the Attorney General’s video message is below:
Domestic violence is a devastating crime that claims far too many lives. Studies have shown that, on average, three women die every day in America at the hands of their partner or ex-partner. And from 2009 to 2012, 40 percent of mass shootings started with the killer targeting a girlfriend, wife, or ex-wife. These are tragic and shocking statistics, and the Justice Department is working hard to bring an end to this horrific status quo.
Under the Violence Against Women Act, which was reauthorized last year, the Department of Justice is taking vital action to protect and empower women and partners who are being exploited and abused. Through our Office on Violence Against Women, we are working to support victims and hold perpetrators accountable by promoting a coordinated community response. And in the reauthorized Act, this Administration helped to secure important new protections for women in Indian Country, LGBT individuals, and others.
These are important achievements – but we must do more. That’s why, in 2013, I was proud to stand with Vice President Biden to unveil a new grant-funded initiative to help reduce domestic violence homicides. This funding provided twelve communities– in states across the country – with the opportunity to reduce domestic violence homicides by effectively identifying potential victims and monitoring high-risk offenders.
And today, I am pleased to announce that four sites have been selected to receive a total of $2.6 million to implement promising models aimed at reducing domestic violence homicides. In Pitt County, North Carolina; in Cuyahoga County, Ohio; in Contra Costa County, California; and in the Borough of Brooklyn, New York – these two-year awards will make a tremendous difference, helping local officials to put their anti-violence initiatives into practice.
View the Attorney General’s message here.