STOP Violence Against Women Formula Grants

CFDA # 16.588

STOP Grants promote a coordinated, multidisciplinary approach to improving the criminal justice system's response to violence against women. This approach envisions a partnership among law enforcement, prosecution, the courts, victim advocates and service providers to ensure victim safety and offender accountability.

This grant program provides funding for projects that assist in efforts to reduce violence against women and men, specifically domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, and dating violence. 

STOP funding is included in the Violence Against Women Act, which was reauthorized in 2013. STOP Violence Against Women Subrecipients must adhere to all requirements in the VAWA Act,  In addition, STOP subrecipients must adhere to all requirements in the  applicable OMB Circulars and Common Rules (Appendix T), the DOJ Grants Financial Guide, the OMB Uniform Guidance, and the 2020 Compliance Supplement.

See STOP Legislative Authority

Eligible subrecipients for federal STOP Violence Against Women funding include:

  1. State Agencies
  2. Units of Local Government
  3. Nonprofit
  4. Organizations
  5. Faith-based Organizations
  6. Community Organizations.

Tennessee, as all states, must allocate STOP Violence Against Women funding within the parameters of the Act as follows:

  1. 5% to support court programs
  2. 25% to support law enforcement programs
  3. 25% to support prosecution programs
  4. 30% to support nonprofit, nongovernmental victim services programs (of which 10% must go to culturally specific community based organizations)
  5. 15% to further support law enforcement, prosecution, court or victim services programs, at the state's discretion.

Statutory Definitions Under 42 U.S. C –3796gg-1-(c)(3):

Law Enforcement – a public agency charged with policing functions, including any of its component bureaus.

Prosecution – any public agency charged with direct responsibility for prosecuting criminal offenders, including such agency’s component bureaus.

Victim Services – a nonprofit, nongovernmental organization that assists domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking victims, including rape crisis centers, domestic violence shelters, faith-based organizations, and other organizations, with a documented history of effective work concerning domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking.

Courts – any civil or criminal, tribal, and Alaskan Village, Federal, State, local or territorial court having jurisdiction to address domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault or stalking, including immigration, family, juvenile, and dependency courts, and the judicial officers serving in those courts, including judges, magistrate judges, commissioners, justices of the peace, or any other person with decision-making authority.

Community Based Organization (an organization that):

  1. Focuses primarily on domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault or stalking;
  2. Has established a specialized culturally specific program that addresses domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault or stalking;
  3. Has a primary focus on underserved populations (and includes representatives of these populations) and domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault or stalking; or
  4. Obtains expertise, or shows demonstrated capacity to work effectively on domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault or stalking through collaboration.

The purpose of the STOP Violence Against Women Grant Program is to assist state agencies, units of local government, nonprofit, faith-based and community organizations in carrying out specific projects which offer a high probability of improving the functioning of the criminal justice system. This grant program provides funding for projects which assist organizations in their efforts to reduce violence against women focused on domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking.

The overriding objective of this funding continues to be the implementation of comprehensive strategies that are sensitive to the needs and safety of victims and hold offenders accountable for their crimes.

STOP Legal Services Applicants - Any agency providing legal assistance with STOP funds shall certify that Any person providing legal assistance with funds through this program has demonstrated expertise in providing legal assistance to victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking in the targeted population; or is partnered with an entity or person that has demonstrated expertise described in subparagraph and has completed, or will complete, training in connection with domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault or stalking and related legal issues, including training on evidence-based risk factors for domestic and dating violence homicide.

Any training program conducted in satisfaction of the requirement of Section 3.3.1. has been or will be developed with input from and in collaboration with a tribal, state, territorial, or local domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault or stalking victim service provider or coalition, as well as appropriate tribal, state, territorial, and local law enforcement officials.

Any person or organization providing legal assistance with funds through this program has informed and will continue to inform state, local, or tribal domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault or stalking programs and coalitions, as well as appropriate state and local law enforcement officials of their work.

The grantee’s organizational policies do not require mediation or counseling involving offenders and victims physically together, in cases where sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, or child sexual abuse is an issue.

Law Enforcement STOP Applicants - In order for law enforcement agencies to qualify for grant funds, they must comply with the following:

  1. Fingerprint Reporting Requirement: The Agency shall ensure that they will comply with Tennessee Code Annotated (TCA) 38-3-122 and will submit all fingerprints taken to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI).
  2. TIBRS Reporting Requirement: The Agency shall ensure that they comply with the rules and regulations of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigations (TBI) as empowered by Tennessee Code Annotated (TCA) 38-10-101 et seq. with regard to the Tennessee Incident Based Reporting System (TIBRS). The agency will at all times maintain TBI certification of their compliance with those rules and regulations.
  3. PREA Requirement: The Tennessee Department of Corrections (TDOC) and correctional facilities which are subcontracted to house TDOC inmates must submit audit documentation demonstrating that they are currently PREA compliant.

Court Program STOP Applicants - Any agency providing court services with STOP funds shall certify that before a court accepts the guilty plea of a defendant charged with a domestic violence offense, it shall inform the defendant that it is a federal offense for a person convicted of a domestic violence offense to possess or purchase a firearm and that from the moment of conviction for such an offense the defendant will never again be able to lawfully possess or buy a firearm of any kind. After so informing the defendant, the court may accept the plea of guilty if the defendant clearly states on the record that the defendant is aware of the consequences of a conviction for a domestic violence offense and still wishes to enter a plea of guilty. If a defendant is not represented by an attorney but wishes to proceed to the trial of a charge of committing a domestic violence offense, the court shall also inform the defendant of the consequences of a conviction for a domestic violence offense. See TCA 40-14-109 for more information.

Court, Law Enforcement or Prosecution STOP Applicants - The agency shall certify that in satisfaction of the requirements under this grant program, this agency certifies that it has consulted with a local, non-profit and non-governmental victim service program during the course of developing this proposal in order to ensure that the proposed activities and equipment acquisitions are designed to promote the safety, confidentiality, and economic independence of victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking and dating violence.

Applicant must provide a brief description of the consultation between the applicant and the local victim services organization identified below. Include the dates and content of planning meetings with the victim services program and advocates. In addition, the local victim services organization must certify to this consultation and the description of the consultation.

STOP funds may be used for/to:

  1. Personnel, training, technical assistance, evaluation, data collection and equipment costs to enhance the apprehension, prosecution and adjudication of persons committing violent crimes against women. Children’s services must be inextricably linked to providing services to victims of domestic violence. For example, STOP funds may support the expansion of shelter services for battered women to include programs for their children.
  2. Transportation costs, in limited circumstances, that are reasonable and would enhance a woman’s safety, including transportation out-of-state.
  3. Operational costs of a facility, such as a shelter, however if the project is supported with funds from other sources as well, i.e. VOCA or other funding, the rent and operational expenses must be prorated among the different funding sources. If the shelter owns its own facility, rent for use of that facility may not be charged to the grant at all; however, related expenses such as utilities and building security may be charged to the grant.
  4. Outreach; to support, inform, and provide outreach to victims about available services. For example, a shelter could distribute brochures listing the signs of domestic violence, describing the services available, and providing a hotline number to access the services. Initiatives designed to reach victims, rather than raise awareness generally, may be supported with STOP funds.
  5. Pro-rated share of food for emergency client needs and the pro-rated share of food purchases for domestic violence shelter resident’s use.
  6. Provide services to incarcerated victims but only to address the domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking victimization experienced by the incarcerated individual, including both crimes experienced while incarcerated and crimes experienced at other points in their youth and adult lives.
  7. Gift cards to clients are only allowable to the extent that they are used for allowable costs under STOP, such as the purchase of emergency food for STOP clients or gas for victims to attend court, appointments etc., related to the victimization. However, agencies must acquire a receipt from the client which documents only allowable items (food or gas-in the example) were purchased. Without copies of these receipts, these costs will be deemed unallowable by OCJP and repayment of these funds will be required.
  8. Rent and Deposits; to cover a victim’s first month’s rent. Deposits are also allowable if the subrecipient has an agreement with the landlord that the full/remaining deposit will be returned to the subrecipient and not the victim at the end of the lease.
  9. Meaningful access; agencies are encouraged to allocate funds to support activities that help to ensure individuals with disabilities and deaf individuals and persons with limited English proficiency have meaningful and full access to their programs. For example, grant funds can be used to support American Sign Language (ASL) interpreter services, language interpretation and translation services, or the purchase of adaptive equipment. Applicants proposing to use grant funds to create websites, videos and other materials must ensure that they are accessible to persons with disabilities and grant funds must be allocated for these purposes.
  10. Services to LGBT victims; to provide services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking. Gay, bisexual, and transgender male victims who request services cannot be refused such services based on their sex.
  11. School programs; to support programs in schools to the extent that they fit within one or more of the STOP program’s statutory program purpose areas. For example, STOP funds could be used to provide support groups that meet at school for dating violence victims or to provide information to students about services available to help victims of dating violence. However, STOP funds may not support general prevention programs in schools.
  12. Civil Legal Assistance; to support civil legal assistance and advocacy services including legal information and resources and divorce for: 1) victims of domestic violence and 2) non-offending parents in matters that involve allegations of child sexual abuse. Applicants should contact OCJP prior to including divorce services in their STOP project.
  13. Co-location of services, such as Family Justice Centers. However, if any of the underlying services at the center cannot be funded through STOP, such as substance abuse counseling, then the staffing for those services still cannot be supported through this purpose area, just the co-location. For example, co-location costs might include a centralized intake person, rent, or security.
  14. SANE/SAFE programs and related activities including: SANE/SAFE personnel; expert testimony of SANE/SAFE personnel; forensic evidence collection kits ("rape kits"); equipment, such as colposcopes, swab dryers, and lights; outreach efforts to inform victims about available services; victim advocate personnel to accompany victims through the forensic examination process; on-going counseling services for victims; and/or on-call time of the SANE/SAFE personnel.

See Chapter XIV. Allowable Costs

  1. Unallowable costs - STOP funds may not be used for/to:
    1.  Children services; STOP funds should not be used for projects that focus on providing services to  children under age 11. In general, victims served with STOP funds must be adults or youth. Youth is defined as individuals age 11 – 24. In limited circumstances, STOP funds can be used to support services provided to secondary victims such as children who witness domestic violence. 
    2. Curriculum for elementary schools; to support the development or presentation of a domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence and/or stalking curriculum for elementary schools. Funds may not be used to teach elementary school students from an already existing curriculum. This would be considered a project that focuses on providing services to children under age 11. 
    3. Legal or defense services for perpetrators of violence against women. But they may support batterers’ intervention programs, if the intervention is part of a graduated range of sanctions that use the coercive power of the criminal justice system to hold abusers accountable for their criminal actions and for changing their behavior.
    4. Public awareness campaign; the production or broadcasting of public awareness announcements or  media campaigns or community education campaigns or related activities. Grant funds may be used to support, inform, and conduct outreach to victims about available services.
    5. Support  inherently religious activities.
    6. Lease and/or purchase vehicles.
    7. Renovations; including minor renovations such as painting or replacing carpeting.
    8. Moving; moving household goods to a new location or acquiring furniture or housing in a new location when a survivor is leaving a shelter.
    9. Immigration fees; for immigration fees for battered immigrant women.
    10. Law Enforcement Equipment; including uniforms, safety vests, shields, weapons, bullets, and/or armory.
    11. Drug an Alcohol programs; to pay for chemical dependency or alcohol abuse programs that are not an integral part of a STOP supported court-mandated batterer intervention program.
    12. Research; to conduct research.
    13. Construction projects.
    14. Acquisition of land or real property.
    15. Fundraising; including financial campaigns, endowment drives, solicitation of gifts and bequests, and similar expenses incurred solely to raise capital or obtain contributions.
    16. Substance abuse counseling.
    17. Criminal defense work, including defending women who assault, kill, or otherwise injure their abusers.
  2. Unallowable Costs Relating to Activities that Compromise Victim Safety and Recovery

    The following activities have been found to jeopardize victim safety, deter or prevent physical or emotional healing for victims, or allow offenders to escape responsibility for their actions and cannot be supported with STOP funds:

    1. Procedures or policies that exclude victims from receiving safe shelter, advocacy services, counseling, and other assistance based on their actual or perceived age, immigration status, race, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, mental health condition, physical health condition, criminal record, work in the sex industry, or the age and/or gender of their children.
    2. Procedures or policies that compromise the confidentiality of information and privacy of persons receiving OVW funded services.
    3. Offering perpetrators the option of entering pre-trial diversion programs or placing batterers in anger management programs.
    4. Requiring mediation or counseling for couples as a systemic response to domestic violence or sexual assault or in situations in which child sexual abuse is alleged.
    5. Requiring victims to report sexual assault, stalking, or domestic violence crimes to law enforcement or forcing victims to participate in criminal proceedings.
    6. Relying on court-mandated batterer intervention programs that do not use the coercive power of the criminal justice system to hold batterers accountable for their behavior.
    7. Supporting policies or engaging in practices that impose restrictive conditions to be met by the victim in order to receive services (e.g., attending counseling, seeking an order of protection).

See Chapter XV. Unallowable Costs

(Revised 12/15/2015)

Publication shall be construed as the initiation of the procurement of writing, editing, preparation of related illustration material, including videos, from recipients/subrecipients, or the internal printing requirements of the recipient/subrecipient necessary for compliance with the terms of the project. However, individuals are authorized to make or have made by any means available to them, without regard to the copyright of the journal and without royalty, a single copy of any such article for their own use.

Project Directors are encouraged to make the results and accomplishments of their activities available to the public. A recipient/subrecipient who publicizes project activities and results shall adhere to the terms and conditions of the award as well as the following:

  1. Responsibility for the direction of the project activity should not be ascribed to OCJP or OVW. The publication shall include the following statement: “The opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication/program/exhibition are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Department of Justice or the Office on Violence Against Women or the State of Tennessee Office of Criminal Justice Programs.” The receipt of OVW funding does not constitute official recognition or endorsement of any project. A separate application for Official Recognition may be filed with OVW, through the OCJP Program Manager assigned the project.
  2. The recipient agrees that all materials and publications (written, web-based, audio-visual, or any other format) resulting from subaward activities shall contain the following statement: "This project was supported by Subgrant No. _________________ awarded by the state administering office for the Office on Violence Against Women, U.S. Department of Justice's STOP Formula Grant Program. The opinions, findings, conclusions, and recommendations expressed in this publication/program/exhibition are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the state or the U.S. Department of Justice."   The OCJP Program Manager will verify the Award Number PRIOR to printing or publication.
  3. A recipient/subrecipient is expected to publish or otherwise make widely available to the public, as requested by OCJP or OVW, the results of work conducted or produced under an award.
  4. All publication and distribution agreements with a publisher will include provisions giving the Federal government and State of Tennessee a royalty-free, nonexclusive, and irrevocable license to reproduce, publish, or otherwise use and to authorize others to use the publication for Federal government purposes.
  5. Unless otherwise specified in the award, the recipient/subrecipient may copyright any books, publications, films, or other copyrightable material developed or purchased as a result of award activities. Copyrighted material shall be subject to the same provisions of the Federal government.

The recipient/subrecipient shall submit a publication and distribution plan to OCJP before materials developed under an award are commercially published or distributed. The plan shall include a description of the materials, the rationale for commercial publication and distribution, the criteria to be used in the selection of a publisher, and, to assure reasonable competition, the identification of firms that will be approached. Prior OCJP approval of this plan is required for publishing project activities and results when Federal funds are used to pay for the publication.

See Chapter XI. Printing, Publications and Media

Annual Report: The STOP Annual Report is due June 1. The agency will receive a link from OCJP to access the web-based report. 

The Project Director is responsible for timely submission of completed program and fiscal reports. Inability to submit required reports in a timely fashion is considered a failure of required contract obligations.

NOTE: The subrecipient is required to gather and maintain statistical data relating to grant project activities as required by the Office of Criminal Justice Programs. The data collected should support the information submitted on the annual reports. OCJP may periodically request to see the back-up data that supports the information submitted on your annual output and outcome reports. 

OVW agencies must develop a policy that addresses workplace-related incidents of sexual misconduct, domestic violence, and dating violence. The following links contain example policies:

The policy must address the following:

1) allegations of workplace-related incidents of sexual misconduct, domestic violence, and dating violence by an employee, volunteer, consultant, or contractor;

2) workplace supports for employees, volunteers, consultants, or contractors who are victims of sexual misconduct, domestic violence, or dating violence; and

3) adjudications that will result in an employee, volunteer, contractor, or consultant being prohibited from occupying positions that could undermine the ability of the recipient or subrecipient to carry out the grant-funded project, such as positions working with victims and other vulnerable populations. A policy may provide that certain adjudications do not prohibit an individual from occupying such a position but must include standards for granting such an exemption for an individual.

When developing your policy, please consider your agency’s organizational structure and type. OCJP recognizes that leave policies, staff resources, and staff procedures for how and where to route allegations may require approval outside your agency’s department. 


“Adjudication” includes a conviction, issuance of a final protection order, court-ordered diversion, or other judicial finding that the employee, volunteer, consultant, or contractor has engaged in domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking.” The recipient may choose to include additional, related offenses, such as sex trafficking, as adjudications.

“Domestic violence,” “dating violence,” “sexual assault,” or “stalking” have the meanings given in 34 U.S.C. § 12291(a).

“Sexual misconduct” means sexual assault, stalking, and sexual harassment.

“Sexual harassment” means unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when this conduct explicitly or implicitly affects an individual’s employment, unreasonably interferes with an individual’s work performance, or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment, whether such activity is carried out by a supervisor or by a co-worker, volunteer, or contractor.

An individual is considered to be in the “workplace” of the recipient or subrecipient while in, or using the resources of, the recipient’s or subrecipient’s offices or facilities, using its equipment or vehicles, engaging in approved telework, on work-related travel, or otherwise conducting business on behalf of the recipient or subrecipient. The availability and nature of the response to a workplace-related incident may depend on the location at issue.

“Workplace-related incidents” of sexual misconduct, domestic violence, and dating violence include acts, attempted acts, or threatened acts by or against employees, consultants, volunteers, or contractors, that occur in the workplace or that occur outside the workplace but have an impact on the workplace or otherwise undermine the ability of the recipient or subrecipient to carry out the grant-funded project.

This Page Last Updated: June 3, 2024 at 10:35 AM