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FVPSA State and Territory Formula Grant Program Fact Sheet

Published: June 7, 2012

History and Purpose

The Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA) provides the primary federal funding stream dedicated to the support of emergency shelter and supportive services for victims of domestic violence and their dependents. FVPSA is located in the Family and Youth Services Bureau (FYSB), a division of the Administration on Children, Youth and Families in the Administration for Children and Families. FYSB administers FVPSA formula grants to States, Territories and Tribes, State domestic violence coalitions, a hotline and national and special-issue resource centers.

FVPSA celebrates its 30th anniversary in October of 2014. First authorized as part of the Child Abuse Amendments of 1984 (P.L. 98–457), FVPSA has been amended eight times. It was most recently reauthorized in December 2010 for five years by the CAPTA Reauthorization Act of 2010 (42 U.S.C. §§ 10401 – 10414).

The statute specifies how most of appropriated funds will be allocated, including three formula grants, the National Domestic Violence Hotline and competitive national resource center grants. In 2013, the appropriation level was $121,225,000. The remaining discretionary funds are used for competitive grants, technical assistance and special projects that respond to critical or otherwise unaddressed issues.

The Need for Services

  • 40% of American Indian or Alaska Native women have experienced rape, physical violence or stalking.1
  • 10% of FVPSA grants are dedicated to Tribes and distributed based on population.
  • Approximately 12.6 million people in the United States experienced rape, physical violence and/or stalking by a current or former spouse, boyfriend or girlfriend.2
  • Nearly 30% of women and 10% of men in the United States have experienced rape, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner and reported at least one impact related to experiencing these or other forms of violent behavior in the relationship (e.g., being fearful, concerned for safety, post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms, need for health care, injury, contacting a crisis hotline, need for housing services, need for victim’s advocate services, need for legal services, missed at least one day of work or school).2
  • Almost 10% of children witnessed family violence in the past year.3
  • Men exposed to physical abuse, sexual abuse, and domestic violence as children were almost four times more likely than other men to have perpetrated domestic violence as adults.4

Serving Families in Crisis

FVPSA formula grants are awarded to every State and Territory and over 200 Tribes. These funds reach almost 1,600 domestic violence shelters and over 1,100 non-residential service sites, providing both a safe haven and an array of supportive services to intervene in and prevent abuse. Each year, FVPSA-funded programs served over 1.3 million victims and their children and respond to 2.7 million crisis calls. FVPSA-funded programs do not just serve victims, they reach their communities; in 2013, programs provided almost 166,000 presentations reaching 4.7 million people, of which over half were youth.

The National Domestic Violence Hotline provides a compassionate and caring response to thousands of victims and survivors of domestic violence, their families and friends and concerned others. Each month, the Hotline answers about 17,500 calls. The Hotline provides crisis intervention, counseling and safety planning and can directly connect the caller to a seamless referral system of over 4,500 community programs across the U.S., Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The Hotline operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and is available in 170 languages. It also provides services to deaf and hard of hearing callers.

Domestic Violence Resource Network

FVPSA supports two national resource centers on domestic violence, along with special issue and culturally specific resource centers. These organizations ensure that victims of domestic violence, advocates, community-based programs, educators, legal assistance providers, justice personnel, health care providers, policy makers, and government leaders at the local, state, tribal and federal levels have access to up-to-date information on best practices, policies, research and victim resources.

Additional Projects

In 2013, FVPSA began a new grant program focused on building the capacity of culturally specific, community based organizations to offer evidence-informed domestic violence and trauma services. The DV Evidence Project is a comprehensive evidence review of services to victims and an online resource center at www.dvevidenceproject.org. A companion site called Promising Futures: Best Practices for Serving Children, Youth and Parents Experiencing Domestic Violence is at www.PromisingFuturesWithoutViolence.org. FVPSA continues its grant to expand leadership opportunities in the domestic violence field for people from underrepresented groups.

1 The National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS): 2010 Summary Report. National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

2 Black MC, Basile KC, Breiding MJ, et al. (2011). The National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS): 2010 Summary Report. Atlanta, GA: National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

3 Finkelhor, D., Turner, H. A., Ormrod, R., Hamby, S., & Kracke, K. (2009) Children’s exposure to violence: A comprehensive national survey. U.S. Department of Justice.

4 Whitfield, C.L., Anda, R.F., Dube, S.R., & Felitti, V.J. (2003) Violent childhood experiences and the risk of intimate partner violence in adults. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 18, 166-185.

Last Reviewed: June 11, 2015

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