PENNSYLVANIA — The Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency (PCCD), in collaboration with the Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police Association, this past week hosted the 2023 STOP (Services, Training, Officers, and Prosecutors) Violence Against Women Statewide Grantee Conference.
Since 2021, PCCD has provided $14.5 million in STOP Violence Against Women Formula Grants to 32 counties and six statewide organizations across the Commonwealth.
“No matter what you look like or where you live, every Pennsylvanian deserves to be safe and feel safe in their community,” said Lt. Gov. Austin Davis, PCCD Chair. “Through funding from STOP Violence Against Women formula grants, grantees are making a difference in the lives of some of the most vulnerable citizens in our Commonwealth.”
Participants of the conference included over 100 victim advocates, nonprofit organizations, law enforcement, prosecutors, and state and local organizations who have received STOP Violence Against Women Program Funding.
The meeting featured a panel of survivors and presentations from a variety of state and national subject matter experts addressing topics including trauma-informed approaches, evidence-based prosecution, understanding counter-intuitive victim behaviors, cyber-stalking, and digital forensics. Participants left the conference having been exposed to new information, evidence-based practices, and resource materials to bring back to their STOP Collaborative County Teams.
“This funding supports communities in their efforts to develop and strengthen effective responses to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking through multidisciplinary collaboration,” said PCCD Executive Director Mike Pennington. “The education, prevention, intervention, and cross-system coordination provided by those here… are critical in curbing abuse and violence in Pennsylvania.”
The STOP Formula Grant Program under the federal Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) supports communities in their efforts to engage in multi-system, collaborative response strategies to domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking that keep victims safe and hold offenders accountable. Each county recipient of STOP must allocate 25 percent of grant funds to law enforcement, 25 percent to prosecution, and 30 percent to victim services. The remaining 15 percent is discretionary and must be used within the parameters of the VAWA.