Youth are often untrusting of authority, uninformed on the law, dependent on others for their financial well-being, without transportation and unaware of the services available to them. With all of these unique challenges, teens need targeted services to truly help them prevent, diagnose and escape abuse.

A program under VAWA, STARY (Services to Advocate for and Respond to Youth - 42 USC 14043c) supports preventive education, mental health services and legal advocacy for youth between the ages of 12 and 24. This program specifically addresses dating abuse and sexual violence committed by and against youth with an emphasis on early intervention. STARY grants:

  • Enable government agencies, tribal groups and community-based organizations that specialize in stopping youth violence to provide tailored services around dating and sexual abuse
  • Encourage courts, community agencies and law enforcement to collaborate on where youth issues like sexual assault, dating violence and homelessness intersect
  • Provide essential training for those who work regularly with youth

We urge Congress to fully fund STARY at its authorized level of $15 million per year.

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