Hoeven Announces $1.4 Million in DOJ Funds to Combat Domestic Violence in the Bakken

WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven today announced that the U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Office on Violence Against Women (OVW) has made three awards totaling $1.4 million to combat domestic violence in the Bakken region. These funds are made available through the Rural Domestic Violence, Dating Violence, Sexual Assault and Stalking Assistance Program and are part of two DOJ initiatives targeting the Bakken region. The details of the awards are as follows.

• Bakken Region Initiative: Enhanced Responses to Victims – two awards totaling $949,391 – The two awards are granted to the North Dakota Council on Abused Women’s Services and the Three Affiliated Tribes of Fort Berthold for $606,000 and $343,391, respectively. The funds will help address the unique challenges faced by victims, responders and service providers within the Bakken region of North Dakota and Montana in order to increase the safety and well-being of women and children in the area.

• Violence Against Women Bakken Regional Initiative: Tribal Special Assistant United States Attorney (SAUSA) Initiative – $450,000 – This award will support a cross-designated prosecutor to maintain an active caseload of violence against women crimes for the purpose of improving the quality of the cases, the coordination of resources and the communication of priorities both within and between various law enforcement agencies in the area.

“North Dakota has been widely recognized in recent years as a place of great opportunity and high quality of life,” Hoeven said. “In order to maintain that quality, we need to adapt to the challenges that growth can bring. That means investing in our law enforcement as well as our public and private community service providers. To that end, these funds will support the coordinated efforts of such groups in the Bakken region, providing enhanced services for victims of domestic violence and sexual assault, helping ensure the offenders are brought to justice and promoting the health and safety of our communities.”

Since the beginning of September, Senator Hoeven has announced more than $5 million in funds for North Dakota to prevent violence against women and children, improve victim services and enhance resources and tools available to law enforcement at the federal, state and local levels.

Senator Hoeven held a roundtable discussion in Williston earlier this month in a push to bring additional resources from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) into North Dakota to help state and local law enforcement officials with the growing number of crimes, including domestic and sexual violence, particularly in the Bakken region. In June, the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee, on which Hoeven serves, passed the Commerce, Justice and Science funding bill, which includes a directive to the DOJ to develop a plan to support law enforcement in North Dakota and the Bakken.