Monmouth County was among the areas most devastated by Superstorm Sandy nearly one year ago. People are still struggling to get their lives back to some semblance of normalcy. Gov. Chris Christie has announced that his Administration is expanding domestic violence services to victims of the storm.

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“Superstorm Sandy has affected so many people in so many ways. Its psychological effects will linger for years, especially for individuals and families who lost their homes, businesses and personal possessions,” said Assemblywoman Mary Pat Angelini, who represents Monmouth County. “Coping with such tremendous loss is extremely stressful. Studies have shown incidences of domestic violence increases following such catastrophic events.”

The state will use almost $5 million in federal funds to bolster some of the state’s domestic violence prevention and treatment programs. According to the New Jersey Department of Children and Families (DCF), the grants will provide alternative housing help for victims and kids. This will include victims who may have had to return to a home where there was previous abuse, or a family that was newly exposed to abuse as a result of the impact of the storm.

“The expansion of domestic violence prevention and treatment services to those left vulnerable by the storm’s aftermath shows the administration’s commitment to leaving no stone unturned when it comes to helping all victims of the storm,” said Angelini. “Recovery doesn’t only involve rebuilding structures, but lives as well.”

The funding will also be used to provide counseling and support services to victims and families including safety planning, referrals, case management, financial education, child care and transportation.