Our Widget:: Why Don't They Just Leave?

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Stimulus Bill DV Victory

Considering talks of cuts in core domestic violence programs, the stimulus bill yields a legislative victory. The three vital programs funding shelters, advocacy programs and police programs have emerged stronger from the bill. What does that mean for domestic violence in America?

The promised funding comes in at around $400 million for abuse programs. The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) gets $300 million specifically for services, training, officers, and prosecutors (STOP) state formula grants; out of which, $50 million will be devoted to the (VAWA) transitional housing program. The Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) will see $100 million. A total of $4.4 million is being devoted to grants for fighting domestic violence. DC advocacy group NNEDV provides a succinct wrap up of the legislative outcome.

The Department of Justice sees $4 billion for grant funding to enhance state, local, and tribal law enforcement efforts, including the hiring of new police officers, to combat violence against women, and to fight internet crimes against children.

With past federal and state budget cuts, many victim services have suffered the consequences. Advocates have lost their jobs, even as the demand for domestic violence support services rise and resources faced peril. The final bill supports building on support for domestic violence victims along with encouraging economic self-sufficiency.
-- Sarah K. Grundy

Oscar Blues

Thavi's film, "The Betrayal," didn't win the Oscar it deserved. Not to disparage anyone else's work, but "Man on Wire" is a well made film about a narcissistic publicity stunt. As opposed to Thavi's work -- a complex, historical, autobiographical, artistic, political film unlike any other. From time to time I let my guard down and expect Hollywood will surprise us in some way. Once again, it didn't happen. Phillipe Petite confirmed my discomfort with "Man on Wire" with his ludicrous performance during the acceptance.
-- Peter Cohn

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