Battered Women’s Programs in Minnesota

Battered Woman

Battered Women Advisory Council

The Battered Women Advisory Council is a 12-member advisory council that advises the Commissioner of Corrections on the implementation and continued operation of matters related to battered women and domestic abuse victims. This council also serves as a liaison between the commissioner and organizations that provide services to battered women and domestic abuse victims. Minn. Stat. § 611A.34.

The commissioner must consider the advisory council’s recommendations before awarding grants or adopting policies regarding programs and services for battered women and domestic abuse victims. The commissioner also must notify the council of intended action before action is taken, except for day-to-day administrative operations. Minn. Stat. § 611A.345.

Battered women’s program director

The battered women’s program director, who is appointed by the Commissioner of Corrections, administers funds, consults with and provides staff to the advisory council, and performs other duties related to battered women’s programs as the commissioner may assign. Minn. Stat. § 611A.35.

Battered women’s shelters

The director of the Center for Crime Victim Services10 is authorized to provide grants that reimburse local programs for the costs of providing battered women and their children with food, lodging, and safety. A shelter facility means a secure crisis shelter, housing network, or safe home. Minn. Stat. §§ 611A.37 to 611A.373.

Domestic violence and sexual assault prevention

In 2000, the legislature created the position of director of domestic violence and sexual assault prevention. The director must promote prevention by:

  • advocating for the rights of victims;
  • increasing public education and awareness about prevention of domestic violence and
  • sexual assault;
  • encouraging and improving accountability at all levels of the system;
  • supporting prosecution and civil litigation;
  • initiating policy changes;
  • coordinating resources and promoting immediate community responses to serve victims;
  • building partnerships among law enforcement, prosecutors, defenders, advocates, and courts;
  • encouraging and supporting health care providers, mental health professionals, employers, educators, clergy, and the public to raise awareness and prevent domestic violence and sexual assault;
  • coordinating and maximizing the use of federal, state, and local resources to prevent domestic violence and sexual assault;
  • serving as a liaison between the Center for Crime Victims Services and Department of Health and overseeing how the Department of Health spends its sexual violence prevention federal block grant; and
  • studying issues involving domestic violence and sexual assault as they pertain to both men and women.

Minn. Stat. § 611A.201.

This and any related posts have been adopted from the Minnesota House of Representatives Research Department’s Information Brief, Domestic Abuse Laws in Minnesota – An Overview, written by legislative analyst Judith Zollar.

This post is also part of a series of posts on Domestic Abuse in Minnesota.

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