Dover, DE – On the 15th Anniversary of landmark legislation that he helped pass as a staffer, U.S. Senator Ted Kaufman (D-DE) marked the celebration by recounting how far advocacy has come and highlighted the newest investment: $2 million to expand the efforts that have saved countless lives in Delaware.
“Recovery Act funding has retained at least 21 jobs and created – at minimum – 6 new full-time and part-time jobs in Delaware to aid victims of domestic abuse,” Sen. Kaufman said in his speech. “The money is spread around 15 agencies and creates and-or continues some amazing services. Just as I was honored to have been a part of the original Violence Against Women Act, I am honored to have voted to bring this new investment to such a worthy cause.”
Sen. Kaufman praised the advocates at the Delaware Coalition Against Domestic Violence’s (DCADV) conference, held on DCADV’s 15th anniversary today.
“Your public education efforts, training initiatives, and advocacy have saved so many families,” Sen. Kaufman told the audience. “Your work with the criminal justice, health care, education, advocacy and social service communities has facilitated effective policies and programs for battered adults and their children. The problems are difficult, but together, we will continue to help those who need it most.”
Sen. Kaufman was Chief of staff to then-Sen. Joe Biden when VAWA became law in 1994, which has provided funds for more law enforcement personnel and prosecutors to handle domestic violence cases and has set up more shelters, crisis services, and legal assistance for victims. In February, Sen. Kaufman voted in favor of the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act (ARRA), which brought almost 2 million dollars to Delaware to aid the fight against domestic abuse and violence.
The funding will:
· Continue the operation of 3 centers statewide to conduct forensic interviews and an emergency shelter in southern New Castle County;
· Designate a Deputy Attorney General here in Kent County to strengthen the response and prosecution of violent domestic crimes;
· Provide free legal representation, rape aftercare, therapy, and translation services;
· Improve outreach to Hispanic communities;
· And offer financial support for housing, utilities, and transportation to those fleeing violent relationships.