Having taken an introduction to public policy course this spring, I have begun to assess Sanctuary For Families using a certain type of analysis. As Sanctuary’s newest “tweeter,” my tasks involve tracking larger policies that are trending in the news, like VAWA and TVPJA. I tweet relevant news to our followers with the hope of spreading Sanctuary’s mission and informing the general public of problems such as domestic violence and sex trafficking. As I learn more about these policies and bills, I begin to dig waaaaaay back in my brain to our class’s discussion of policy and politics and the interaction between the two. Working at Sanctury affords me the opportunity to observe how policy functions on a small scale. While certain laws may be in place, it is not always clear that the government is enforcing such laws.
Thus far, I have observed that Sanctuary must fill in the gaps that the government does not reach. While domestic violence and sex trafficking are illegal, Sanctuary provides services to victims who have not been protected by the State. Through various different clinical services, Sanctuary staff members recognize the need and act on it. In addition, however, Sanctuary’s legal staff puts forth new laws and amendments to refine and improve the laws already in place.
At this juncture, I feel that Sanctuary is stuck playing catch-up, as it is forced to deal with the inadequacies of our government before it can pave the path in new territory.