UB Family Violence Clinic Receives $140,000 In State Funding

By Sue Wuetcher

Release Date: October 15, 1997

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The Family Violence Clinic in the University at Buffalo School of Law has received $140,000 in state funding to expand its work throughout the Eighth Judicial District of New York and serve as a regional resource center offering technical assistance and training to various government agencies and community-based organizations.

The funding, announced by Barry B. Boyer, dean of the law school, and John B. Sheffer II, director of the Institute for Local Governance and Regional Growth at UB, includes a $70,000 member item from New York State Sen. Mary Lou Rath and a $70,000 STOP Violence Against Women grant from the New York State Department of Criminal Justice.

The Family Violence Clinic, directed by Suzanne E. Tomkins, provides critically needed legal support for victims of domestic violence. It offers students an enriching educational component and strengthens relationships with a broad spectrum of agencies in the legal and social-service system in Western New York.

The clinic has used the new funding to join with the Institute for Local Governance and Regional Growth in a cooperative venture beginning this fall to serve as a regional resource center for the Eighth Judicial District, which includes the counties of Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Niagara, Orleans and Wyoming. The clinic is providing technical assistance to the counties in the form of training and development of resource materials tailored to the needs of each locale. The clinic also is working closely with officials in each county to develop community-coordinated response projects.

Students, under faculty supervision, are assisting in developing and implementing protocols for law enforcement, courts, and social-service and health-care providers.

The clinic continues to provide training for court advocates, court personnel, law enforcement personnel and the judiciary. A training and resource manual published by the clinic is adaptable for use in any county throughout New York.