The Ohio Democratic Women’s Legislative Caucus (ODWLC) today called for hearings on several anti-domestic violence bills they say will protect victims and ensure safer homes for thousands of children and families across Ohio.
“Part of the Ohio Promise is to make sure that all Ohioans are able to live safely and securely. In honor of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, the Women’s Caucus is uniting to fight for our sisters and put an end to domestic violence,” said ODWLC Chair Rep. Tavia Galonski (D-Akron).
October marks National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, a month-long effort to connect people with critical resources to break the cycle of domestic violence.
“House Bill 351 and the other bills introduced by my colleagues are a clear indication Ohio needs to be better at combating domestic violence,” said Rep. Lisa Sobecki (D-Toledo). “The Ohio Democratic Women’s Legislative Caucus is leading the way by standing up for victims of domestic violence in a variety of ways.”
“After an arrest or protection order is issued, victims should not face hurdles that make it difficult for them to put a distance between themselves and their abusers,” added Rep. Lepore-Hagan (D-Youngstown). “What they do need is an exit strategy and assurance that they will be safe. HB351 gives them an opportunity for a fresh start at a new address away from the person who is threatening or hurting them.”
Dem lawmakers highlighted several bills to protect victims of domestic violence and their families, including:
- House Bill (HB) 351, which would allow victims to terminate lease agreements and find safer housing after obtaining a protection order.
- BOGGS BILL, which would allow those seeking protection orders be excused from work, adding an additional layer of safety and security for victims of domestic violence.
- Senate Bill (SB) 43, a bipartisan bill to prohibit a person subject to a protection order or convicted of domestic violence from having a firearm.
- SB 146, a bipartisan bill to add strangulation to Ohio’s definition of domestic violence.
“No one should have to choose between protecting themselves and their families and their job, or their housing, or other basic necessities. The legislation being championed by the women’s caucus is an important step to creating a safer and more secure future for victims of domestic violence across the state of Ohio,” said House Assistant Minority Leader Rep. Kristin Boggs (D-Columbus).
According to Ohio’s Attorney General, there were more than 64,000 reported domestic violence incidents in Ohio in 2018. Across the country, one-in-three women and one-in-four men experience some form of domestic violence each year.
“I am pleased to be a part of this collaborative effort by members of the Ohio Democratic Women’s Legislative Caucus, which includes multiple pieces of important, commonsense legislation to prevent and combat domestic violence,” said Sen. Nickie Antonio (D-Lakewood). “Senate Bills 43 and 146 will make a positive change and impact the lives of domestic violence survivors.”