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All the programs detailed in the attached chart work together to provide a comprehensive response to victims of violence.

These include lifesaving legalservices; funding for services in rural and remote areas; transitional housing programs to help victims rebuild their lives after violence and abuse; law enforcement improvements such as Sexual Assault Response Teams, initiatives to address the rape kit backlog, and homicide reduction initiatives; services for underserved victims including disabled and elderly victims; funding to ensure compliance with the requirement of serving victims with Limited English Proficiency; programs aimed at children, youth, and college students; projects addressing courts and visitation; programs to respond to the epidemic of sexual assault and domestic violence on tribal lands; projects addressing violence in the workplace; a national domestic violence hotline; and prevention programs and public health responses to violence and abuse.

In 2016, almost a quarter of rape crisis centers saw an overall decrease in funds as well as a decrease in staffing – over 100 advocate positions were either laid off or left unfilled.

Over 12 million individuals experience domestic violence annually, according to the CDC.

Desperate need remains Despite this progress, shelters, rape crisis centers, and other domestic and sexual violence service providers continue to face budget shortfalls.Investments in these programs must fulfill the promise of VAWA, FVPSA, and related federal laws by meeting the demand for services.VAWA, VOCA, and FVPSA are smart investments that have fueled our undeniable national progress in addressing domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking.National Task Force to End Sexual & Domestic Violence Appropriations Letter for 2018 Fiscal Year Senator Richard Shelby, Chair, Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science Senator Jeanne Shaheen, Ranking Member, Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science Senator Roy Blunt, Chair, Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies Senator Patty Murray, Ranking Member, Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies Representative John Culberson, Chair, House Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science Representative José Serrano, Ranking Member, House Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science Representative Tom Cole, Chair, House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies Representative Rosa De Lauro, Ranking Member, House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies May 1, 2017 Dear Senators Shelby, Shaheen, Blunt, and Murray, and Representatives Culberson, Serrano, Cole, and De Lauro: The National Taskforce to End Sexual and Domestic Violence (NTF) is comprised of national, state, and local leadership organizations and individuals advocating on behalf of sexual assault and domestic violence victims and women’s rights.The 977 undersigned organizations join with the NTF to urge you to significantly increase funding for federal programs that address domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence, and stalking, and reject cuts to these critical programs.