National Latino Alliance For The Elimination Of Domestic Violence Essay

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The National Latino Alliance for the Elimination of Domestic Violence (Alianza) is part of a national effort to address the domestic violence needs and concerns of underserved populations. It represents a growing network of Latina and Latino survivors, advocates, practitioners, researchers, and community activists. As noted on Alianza’s Web site, its mission is to “promote understanding, initiate and sustain dialogue, and generate solutions that move toward the elimination of domestic violence affecting Latino communities, with an understanding of the sacredness of all relations and communities.”

The Administration for Children and Families of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) has supported the development of a national network of organizations to support work on domestic violence in specific communities. In addition to Alianza, these include the Institute on Domestic Violence in the African American Community, Asian and Pacific Islander Institute on Domestic Violence, and Sacred Circle National Resource Center to End Domestic Violence Against Native Women.

Alianza evolved from a national steering committee that was established in January 1997 and composed of Latinas and Latinos with a history of national leadership on the issue domestic violence. The steering committee then organized a National Symposium on La Violencia Doméstica: An Emerging Dialogue Among Latinos in the fall of 1997. The symposium proceedings, published in 1999, generated a national dialogue on domestic violence in Latino communities. At the symposium, the creation of a national organization was suggested, and in March 1999, the Alianza was formed. The next year, Alianza received funding from DHHS enabling it to hire core staff and to establish an office in New York City. By 2004, Alianza had moved into its own offices and received tax-exempt status as an independent nonprofit organization.

Programs And Projects

Alianza enhances the knowledge and skills of Latino/a service providers, advocates, and survivors and develops culturally and linguistically relevant resource materials. It raises awareness about the devastating effects of domestic violence on Latino families and communities and provides information about existing laws, options, resources, and services.

Alianza supports culturally competent research that informs the development of policies and programs sensitive to the needs of Latino communities. It assists researchers in conducting focus groups and community assessments and supports the mentoring of students and other Latino/a researchers. Alianza advocates for and helps to formulate policies that help prevent and end domestic violence in Latino communities and advocates for the allocation of adequate resources.

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