Both statistically and anecdotally, incidents of violence against women increase as the economy falters. As Obama prepares to release his budget, now’s the time to ask him and Congress not to reduce funding for preventing violence against women and helping survivors. According to Women’s eNews:
Congress is currently authorized to spend up to $175 million a year for the program. But the actual allocation of federal dollars is subject to a congressional vote, and lawmakers last year set aside $123 million; over $50 million less than was approved. That was a slight cut from fiscal 2007, when Congress spent $125 million on the program.
Women’s safety advocates also want Congress to fully fund the Violence Against Women Act, a broader anti-violence law originally passed in 1994 that provides some funds for domestic violence shelters but also sets aside money for a wide range of other services relating to sexual and domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking.
But with an ailing economy curtailing federal revenues from taxes, and lawmakers focused on economic-stimulus efforts, more money for discretionary social programs that combat domestic violence could be hard to come by.
In other words, the tanking economy means there’s a greater need for these services, but less money to provide them. Marcella at abyss2hope writes,
I am asking each US citizen who reads this post to contact President Obama, your 2 senators (or 1 if you live in MN) and your representative and ask them all to support the reauthorization and the funding for the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act. After you contact your representatives, please ask those you know to do the same.
Again, contacted your elected officials HERE.
UPDATE: Obama’s budget is up now. I don’t have time right now to comb through for the info on violence against women, but will update this post later. In the meantime, post links in comments if you see some analysis elsewhere!