Tester Secures Grant to Bolster Lake County Domestic Violence Initiative

Funding will Enhance Victim Safety, Hold Offenders Accountable

(Billings, Mont.) – U.S. Senator Jon Tester has secured nearly half a million dollars to bolster domestic and sexual violence response efforts in Lake County.

The $437,872 grant from the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Office on Violence Against Women will enable Lake County, in collaboration with non-governmental partner Safe Harbor, to increase victim services, update standard operating procedures for local law enforcement, and improve training for people handling sexual and domestic violence cases.

“Helping survivors of sexual and domestic violence recover from violent crimes is critically important,” Tester said. “These improvements will foster a community-wide response that utilizes up-to-date practices and tools to ensure survivors are supported and offenders are held accountable.”

Tester noted the grant also allows for an update to the Lake County Attorney and Sheriff’s protocol for handling such cases, enabling it to be shared with the Flathead Indian Reservation.

Tester has been a staunch defender of sexual and domestic abuse survivors. In 2017 he helped pass the Commerce, Justice, and Science Appropriations Act, which invests $481.5 million in the DOJ’s Office on Violence Against Women, and last week he demanded the Senate hold hearings on missing and murdered Native American women.