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GrantmakingVAWA and OVW Information

STOP TA Clinic 10/31/22: STOP Formula Grant Prosecution Certification with Marnie Shiels, OVW, and John Wilkinson, AEquitas

In this Clinic, speakers Marnie Shiels (OVW) and John Wilkinson (AEquitas) shared information and tips on the new STOP Formula Grant Prosecution Certification. Ms. Shiels began the clinic by analyzing 34 U.S. Code § 10454 which describes that prosecutors must certify that while receiving STOP Funds, they will not compel victim testimony. Under this Certification, prosecutors must be trained in a victim-centered approach and must enact this approach prior to material witness petitions and bench warrants. Such an approach prevents further victimization and secondary trauma to the victim. Mr. Wilkinson continued the Clinic by describing the ways in which AEquitas and other TA providers can assist States and Territories with this new Certification. Questions from Administrators were addressed throughout the clinic with information ranging from when the Prosecution Certification will be enacted to which positions will be required to complete a Certification. 

Marnie Shiels is presently employed as an attorney in the Office on Violence Against Women of the U.S. Department of Justice. Previously, Ms. Shiels was employed as a legal analyst at the National Center for Victims of Crime, tracking federal and state statutes and cases relating to crime victims and writing articles on legal issues related to sexual assault, domestic violence, and stalking. 

As an Attorney Advisor with AEquitas, John presents on trial strategy, legal analysis and policy, and ethical issues related to violence against women at the local, state, national and international level. He conducts research; develops training materials, resources, and publications; and provides case consultation and technical assistance for prosecutors and allied professionals. John has presented extensively on the investigation and prosecution of domestic violence, sexual violence, stalking and human trafficking both in the United States and abroad. John’s international work includes developing and implementing training for police, prosecutors, judges and allied professionals in national and international conferences in Cameroon, South Africa, Fiji, France, Brazil, and Egypt.