U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand today announced $600,000 in federal funding for The Legal Aid Society of Mid-New York. The funding was allocated through the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Office on Violence Against Women and is authorized through the Legal Assistance for Victims (LAV) Grant Program. Specifically, Utica-based legal aid organization will use these funds to provide quality legal representation, supportive services and outreach to victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking and dating violence across 12 counties in Central New York. The grant will be implemented in partnership with the Rural Law Center of New York, the American Civic Association, the Multicultural Association of Medical Interpreters, and 13 domestic and sexual violence victim service providers.
“Domestic and dating violence is never acceptable and we must do all we can to both prevent it in the first place and take care of those who are victimized by it. Fortunately, there are organizations like The Legal Aid Society of Mid-New York dedicated to providing legal aid to victims so we can help those affected get the justice they deserve,” said Senator Schumer. “I will continue doing everything I can to ensure organizations like these have the resources they need to combat these horrible crimes.”
“This critical federal funding through the Department of Justice will help facilitate a wide range of programs to better assist domestic violence survivors,” said Senator Gillibrand. “Domestic violence is a serious problem and we need to work towards creating a safe environment for individuals and families. By increasing accessibility to legal services for survivors we can help provide the support and resources they need to be protected and put their lives back together.”
The goal of the grant programs through the Office on Violence Against Women is to create sustainable change within and between organizations that results in accessible, safe and effective services for individuals who are victims of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking and accountability for perpetrators of such crimes. The Legal Assistance for Victims Grant Program is designed to strengthen civil and criminal legal assistance programs for adult and youth victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking who are seeking relief in legal matters arising as a consequence of that abuse or violence.