(a) In general
The Secretary shall award grants for the funding of State domestic violence coalitions. Such coalitions shall further the purposes of domestic violence intervention and prevention through activities, including
working with local domestic violence programs and providers of direct services to encourage appropriate responses to domestic violence within the State, including
(A) training and technical assistance for local programs and professionals working with victims of domestic violence;
(B) planning and conducting State needs assessments and planning for comprehensive services;
(C) serving as an information clearinghouse and resource center for the State; and
(D) collaborating with other governmental systems which affect battered women;
working with judicial and law enforcement agencies to encourage appropriate responses to domestic violence cases and examine issues including
(A) the inappropriateness of mutual protection orders;
(B) the prohibition of mediation when domestic violence is involved;
(C) the use of mandatory arrests of accused offenders;
(D) the discouragement of dual arrests;
(E) the adoption of aggressive and vertical prosecution policies and procedures;
(F) the use of mandatory requirements for presentence investigations;
(G) the length of time taken to prosecute cases or reach plea agreements;
(H) the use of plea agreements;
(I) the consistency of sentencing, including comparisons of domestic violence crimes with other violent crimes;
(J) the restitution of victims;
(K) the use of training and technical assistance to law enforcement, judges, court officers and other criminal justice professionals;
(L) the reporting practices of, and significance to be accorded to, prior convictions (both felony and misdemeanor) and protection orders;
(M) the use of interstate extradition in cases of domestic violence crimes;
(N) the use of statewide and regional planning; and
(O) any other matters as the Secretary and the State domestic violence coalitions believe merit investigations;
work with family law judges, criminal court judges, Child Protective Services agencies, and childrens advocates to develop appropriate responses to child custody and visitation issues in domestic violence cases as well as cases where domestic violence and child abuse are both present, including
(A) the inappropriateness of mutual protection orders;
(B) the prohibition of mediation where domestic violence is involved;
(C) the inappropriate use of marital or conjoint counseling in domestic violence cases;
(D) the use of training and technical assistance for family law judges, criminal court judges, and court personnel;
(E) the presumption of custody to domestic violence victims;
(F) the use of comprehensive protection orders to grant fullest protections possible to victims of domestic violence, including temporary custody support and maintenance;
(G) the development by Child Protective Service of supportive responses that enable victims to protect their children;
(H) the implementation of supervised visitations or denial of visitation to protect against danger to victims or their children; and
(I) the possibility of permitting domestic violence victims to remove children from the State when the safety of the children or the victim is at risk;
(4) conduct public education campaigns regarding domestic violence through the use of public service announcements and informative materials that are designed for print media, billboards, public transit advertising, electronic broadcast media, and other vehicles for information that shall inform the public concerning domestic violence, including information aimed at underserved racial, ethnic or language-minority populations; and
participate in planning and monitoring of the distribution of grants and grant funds to their State under section 10402 (a)
of this title.
To be eligible for a grant under this section, an entity shall be a statewide nonprofit State domestic violence coalition meeting the following conditions:
(1) The membership of the coalition includes representatives from a majority of the programs for victims of domestic violence in the State.
(2) The board membership of the coalition is representative of such programs.
(3) The purpose of the coalition is to provide services, community education, and technical assistance to such programs to establish and maintain shelter and related services for victims of domestic violence and their children.
In the application submitted by the coalition for the grant, the coalition provides assurances satisfactory to the Secretary that the coalition
(A) has actively sought and encouraged the participation of law enforcement agencies and other legal or judicial entities in the preparation of the application; and
(B) will actively seek and encourage the participation of such entities in the activities carried out with the grant.
(d) Prohibition on lobbying
No funds made available to entities under this section shall be used, directly or indirectly, to influence the issuance, amendment, or revocation of any executive order or similar promulgation by any Federal, State or local agency, or to undertake to influence the passage or defeat of any legislation by Congress, or by any State or local legislative body, or State proposals by initiative petition, except that the representatives of the entity may testify or make other appropriate communication
(1) when formally requested to do so by a legislative body, a committee, or a member thereof; or
(2) in connection with legislation or appropriations directly affecting the activities of the entity.