This week is National Police Week, and all of us at OVW want to thank the brave law enforcement officers who risk their lives daily to help survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence and stalking everywhere. Successfully combatting violence against women requires that we come together with a coordinated community response and law enforcement is at the heart of that response.
It was a great professional privilege to work with law enforcement throughout my career on a daily basis as a prosecutor and a Judge. Witnessing the compassion, commitment, skill, and bravery of our local law enforcement officers is seeing the system work at its best. There is no doubt a multidisciplinary team approach to combatting violence is the approach that works. I created and presided over two problem-solving courts in my time as a judge, and I know that there is magic in the team. It is very powerful to bring together committed, caring representatives from law enforcement, the District Attorney’s office, and victim service providers to share ideas and develop solutions unique to each community. Coordinated efforts like Project Safe Neighborhoods, Family Justice Centers, and Domestic Violence High Risk Teams can transform the community response to violence.
OVW funds police departments, sheriffs’ offices, and other law enforcement professionals to engage in these collaborative responses to the crimes of domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence, and stalking. OVW grants and subgrants pay the salaries of nearly 300 law enforcement officers at any given time. In one year, these officers’ departments respond to more than 150,000 calls for service, investigate more than 150,000 cases, and refer more than 70,000 cases to prosecutors. In total, OVW discretionary grants support more than 50 specialized law enforcement units.
OVW technical assistance providers also offer trainings, toolkits, and other resources to assist law enforcement. Recent resources for law enforcement can be found at: https://ojp.gov/policeweek/cops-ovw.htm#ovw. Many upcoming OVW-funded trainings and webinars are posted at: www.TA2TA.org.
We encourage all members of the law enforcement community to take advantage of OVW's resources, apply for grants, attend trainings, and contact us with any questions. Visit: www.justice.gov/ovw or follow us on Twitter: @OVWJustice.
Thank you for your service and thank you for joining us as partners in coordinated community responses across this nation.