Congressman Faleomavaega announced today that the U.S. Department of Justice has informed him that the American Samoa Government (ASG) has been awarded $427,460.00 under the STOP Violence Against Women Formula Grant Program.
“The STOP Program was reauthorized and amended by Congress in 2000 under the Violence Against Women Act of 2000 or VAWA 2000,” Congressman Faleomavaega said. “Its intent is to encourage the development and implementation of effective, victim-centered law enforcement, prosecution, and court strategies to address violent crimes against women and for the development and enhancement of victim services in cases involving violent crimes against women.”
“Like most grants ASG receives from the federal government, the STOP award was non-competitive meaning ASG did not have to compete against other States and Territories for these funds. Instead, Congress authorized these funds to be distributed to States, Territories and the District of Columbia based on a formula which members of Congress agree upon each year during the appropriation process.”
“As a result of the House and Senate’s commitment to stop violence against women, the American Samoa Criminal Justice Planning Agency will receive $427,460.00 and will allocate not less than 30 percent of its STOP funding to nonprofit, nongovernmental victim services programs; not less than 25 percent to law enforcement; not less than 25 percent to prosecution; and not less than 5 percent to courts with the remaining 15 percent to be awarded at our Territory’s discretion within the statutory parameters of VAWA and VAWA 2000.”
“I am very pleased that Congress continues to assist us in our efforts and I want to encourage anyone who may be aware of violence against women to contact our local authorities so proper assistance can be given to protect our wives and daughters and mothers and sisters and nieces and aunties and other family members. At the same time, I want to commend Director Alaalamua Filoialii and the Criminal Justice Planning Agency for the tremendous job they have done in managing this program.”
“Again, I am committed to doing everything I can to make sure that American Samoa receives the federal aid it deserves and, in consideration of Mother’s Day that we recently celebrated, I want to extend my warmest regards to the women of our Territory and thank them for making American Samoa a home on the other side of heaven,” the Congressman concluded.