STEPS to End Violence (STEPS) is a holistic program of services for victims of gender-based violence with a focus on prevention, intervention, and policy advocacy. Spurred by a call to action resulting from an historic hearing at Bedford Hills Women’s Prison in which twelve women testified to their histories of battering and its relationship to the charges which eventually brought them to Bedford, STEPS has been providing holistic, trauma-informed services since 1986. Begun with a staff of two as a court advocacy project for battered women defendants, the program has since grown exponentially and now reaches over 5,000 New Yorkers each year.
STEPS staff and leadership have presented at numerous conferences, including the International Community Justice Summit in San Francisco. Our court-based work around sex trafficking was presented at Columbia University’s Reframing Freedom: a Critical Approach to Modern Slavery Conference in April. Internationally, STEPS staff have presented or served as panelists in policy-shaping actions, including most recently in 2013 at the United Nations where we were invited by Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women to participate in an expert working group to discuss causes, consequences and conditions of violence against women in custodial settings. This international work has included hosting visits from the Australian government, a Chinese non-government organization (NGO), Oxford University, and the government of Great Britain. STEPS has also served as a technical assistance provider to the government of Ghana in their effort to incorporate services for domestic violence victims into their judicial system.
We have developed an array of training curricula for professionals and community members and are available to provide training and consultation on such topics as:
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