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Dec. 10, 2020

UPD receives grant to help sexual assault survivors

By Leah Newell, communication assistant


Northwest Missouri State University’s University Police Department (UPD) is the recipient of a three-year, $300,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women to advance efforts aimed at preventing domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking while helping survivors of those incidents.

The grant covers the cost of a project director working 30 hours a week on campus within the University Police Department. Mosaic Life Care, which provides health care in Maryville, will receive about $45,000 a year to help provide a sexual assault nurse examiner (SANE) and ensure 24/7 SANE coverage.

“It’s a testament that when people come together for a good cause, for a passion to help not only college students, but to increase resources for people to come into our community and use, great things can happen,” University Police Lt. Amanda Cullin said.

The program provides a unique opportunity for institutions of higher education to establish multidisciplinary approaches designed to enhance victim services, implement prevention and education programs, and develop and strengthen security and investigation strategies to prevent, prosecute and respond to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking.

The campus program supports activities that develop a coordinated response that includes campus victim services, law enforcement, health care providers, housing officials, administrators, student leaders, faith-based organizations, student organizations and disciplinary boards while enhancing victim safety and assistance and holding offenders accountable.

Through the initial grant award, the collaborative partnership will create a coordinated community response team to oversee planning and implementation activities; provide prevention programming, including bystander intervention to students on domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking; provide ongoing training to law enforcement on how to effectively respond to these crimes; provide access to 24-hour confidential victim services and advocacy; and provide ongoing training to staff involved with the campus disciplinary process.

The grant also will enhance the work of University Police Department’s Sexual Assault Response Team (SART), which also works closely with other law enforcement agencies, the Nodaway County prosecutor, Mosaic and North Star Advocacy Center, as well as other University offices, including Title IX and Wellness Services.

In addition to the grant, the Missouri Department of Public Safety now recommends trauma-informed interviewing for all police departments in Missouri. Prior to the state’s recommendation in September, Northwest University Police completed more than 40 hours of the training in July as part of the process improvement it identified to be survivor-centered.


Media contact:

Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager | mhorn@nwmissouri.edu | 660.562.1704