Target: California Governor Jerry Brown
Goal: Strengthen police enforcement in domestic violence cases
The State Senate of California recently unanimously and without debate passed a bill that would reinstate California police regulations regarding domestic abuse. If the bill becomes law, the state will mandate that police departments throughout California maintain full records of restraining orders within their jurisdictions. In addition, the bill would require that police departments adopt standards for responding to domestic violence calls. Doing so would help protect previous victims of domestic violence from further attacks as well as streamline the police approach to domestic violence complaints.
While regulations and enforcement have long varied from one police department to another, this piece of legislation is important inasmuch as it would introduce changes on a statewide level. Unlike a previous bill that failed to pass the Senate, this one would make these changes part of a state mandate—being a state mandate means that the state itself must cover the costs of implementing the law. Given the ever-tenuous nature of city and county budgets, making the bill a state mandate will make its enforcement more stable.
Soon, this piece of legislation will land on Governor Jerry Brown’s desk, and await his signature. While a Democrat, Brown has drawn fire from some in his party for sharp budget cuts, and the funding of the state mandate may cause Brown to vacillate about signing the bill. In the words of activist Camille Hayes, eliminating the state mandate part of the bill could have “long-term consequences” in how police respond to domestic violence cases. Please sign the petition below to ask that Jerry Brown sign this important piece of legislation, and ensure that the men and women who face domestic violence do not go unaided.
Dear Governor Jerry Brown,
The California State Senate recently passed a domestic violence bill that will soon be on your desk. This important piece of legislation steps up police enforcement to protect victims of domestic violence. This bill is superior to similar ones that have been proposed in the state legislature, because it reinstates California state mandates to fund police enforcement and streamline the approach police departments take to complaints of domestic abuse. The bill would also protect former victims of domestic abuse from further violence by mandating that police departments keep updated records of standing restraining orders.
Even today, after all the progress that has been made, the national statistics on domestic violence and abuse are staggering. Clearly, there is still far to go to ensure that men and women are not battered, raped, or otherwise abused. To that end, I ask that you sign this bill when it arrives at your desk.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: heraldpost via Flickr