April 1998 Home   Newsletters

May 1998

June-July 1998

Did Yesterday's Dream Come True? (Dee Jay Mailer)
President's Message (Grace Furukawa)
Decisions on Tax Changes Near (Astrid Monson)
L.A. Rail Project Stalled (Arlene Ellis)
Voter Service
VAWA Planning Committee Meets (Suzanne Meisenzahl)
Title IX Today

VAWA Planning Committee Meets

More and more I am made aware that the victims of domestic violence in our community are not being heard. Hawaii has preliminarily qualified for $976,000 in VAWA funds for 1998 with a special condition that an implementation plan be submitted by May 12. The attorney general has held two meetings with this goal in mind.

League has observed these meetings. When we interviewed the Attorney General last year she indicated that these meetings were important in assessing victim needs as well as the allocation of funds. The original plan called for regular meetings throughout the year to address these concerns. Prior to the meetings held on March 31 and April 28 of this year, the last meeting was held on May 1997.

Last year's committee had 22 members. This year the "newly constituted" committee is comprised of 13 members with no participation by battered, or formerly battered women. After debating this fact, a motion was made to add the statement: "To ensure the capacity for victim/ survivor participation in all aspects of development and implementation of policy and programs for domestic violence and sex assault" to the list of recommendations. Out of a possible 65 votes, the motion received 1 vote.

At the second meeting it was announced that data gathering continues to be a problem. However, in 1995 the Victim Information Data System was funded by a unanimous decision of the committee. To date the necessary hardware has not been purchased.

Although this year's first meeting indicated that early intervention is crucial for the safety and recovery of the victim of abuse, voting on the final recommendations showed no tangible evidence of that concern One general policy recommendation – "evaluate services under VAWA-funded projects" received two votes out of a possible 65.

Our second domestic violence report should be out this month for League member review. It will look at our concerns in more depth. Are victims silenced? If so, why?

Suzanne Meisenzahl
VPC Chair

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