Restore Funding for Domestic Violence Programs

Domestic Violence

Target: U.S. Congress

Goal: Provide essential social services to victims of domestic violence impacted by sequestration

As sequestration cuts prompt reduced services nationwide the full impacts of politicians’ unwillingness to seek solutions become clearer. The danger of these across-the-board, highly politicized budget cuts notoriously inhibited disaster relief efforts for tornado victims last month. In addition to thousands of government job cuts, layoffs, and furloughs, basic social services also face major obstacles to critical missions. One area particularly hard hit by these spending cuts is domestic violence program funding.

According to Kim Gandy, CEO of the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV), while state programs experience widely reduced funding they also face increasing demands. In her comments to ThinkProgress, she notes that these cuts affect 69 percent of state-level programs so deeply “that they were unable to make up with private donations.” Moreover, state and local government financial woes impact nearly 80 percent of organizations, compounding the financial shortages. Most troublingly of all the NNEDV “found that 10,401 people reached out for help and were turned away for a lack of resources last year [2012], similar to the number a year before.”

There is no clear way out of the budgetary fiasco facing Congress and myriad proposals are routinely rejected by both parties. Beyond the obvious adverse economic impacts of sequestration, the unconscionable funding reductions for domestic violence programs nationwide place thousands of women and children in imminent danger. This tragedy is more important than partisan posturing and represents a moral imperative to Congressional leaders on both sides of the aisle. Demand that Congress provide support to domestic violence shelters and other protective programs now.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Congressional Leaders,

The continued across-the-board cuts prompted by sequestration have enormous economic impacts for all Americans, including wage reductions and furloughs for many government workers. Sequestration, however, hits America’s most vulnerable populations hardest. These widespread politicized cuts vastly reduce essential funding for social services such as domestic violence programs.

The National Network to End Domestic Violence reports that 69 percent of state-level programs were cut so deeply “that they were unable to make up with private donations,” while more than 10,000 women and children were turned away from shelters last year alone. These cuts are putting thousands of families at substantial risk. Put aside political posturing and do the right thing now: protect America’s families by restoring funding to domestic violence programs.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: GovernmentZA via Flickr

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