Violence Against Women Act Would Support Local Efforts

3 years 5 months 1 week ago February 14, 2013 Feb 14, 2013 Thursday, February 14 2013 Thursday, February 14, 2013 12:30:00 PM CST in News
By: Dan Molloy

COLUMBIA - On Tuesday, the U.S. Senate passed the Violence Against Women Act with a vote of 78-22. While the House of Representatives waits to vote on the bill, local leaders are discussing its impact on domestic violence in Mid-Missouri.

The impending House vote even prompted Senator Claire McCaskill to visit Columbia Friday to urge the public to contact its representatives to ensure the bill's passage.

"This is life-saving legislation," McCaskill said in a news conference at the Boone County Courthouse.

The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) provides funding for the investigation and prosecution of violent crimes against women and establishes the Office on Violence Against Women in the Justice Department. Additionally, the act provides grants that fund prevention and victim support programs, including those in Boone County. Columbia's Domestic Violence Enforcement Unit (DOVE) operates with a grant that helps pay for three full-time staff salaries.

Boone County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Knight said last year Boone County alone had more than 1,000 victims in 2012, and his office prosecuted about 750 domestic violence cases.

"This is a large number of cases that we are handling right here in Boone County," Knight said. "This funding is critically important if we're going to continue to provide this level of service."

Barbara Hodges is the executive director of True North of Columbia, a round-the-clock service that provides shelter and counseling for men, women and children affected by domestic violence. Hodges said True North does not have the funding it needs to operate at the level she desires.

"Without that help, we wouldn't be able to make a lot of these cases in the courtroom," Knight said. "The victims would not have the services that they need in order to hang in there any to testify."

In a letter to Congress last week, Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster explained that in 2011, Missouri women reported more than 40,000 cases of domestic violence and more than 1,400 cases of rape or attemped rape. Koster also noted that although more than 10,000 victims were able to find shelter, nearly 20,000 women were turned away.

On Friday, McCaskill recalled working with victims of domestic violence when she was the Jackson County Prosecutor from 1992 to 1998.

"There weren't and there still isn't sufficient bed space for women seeking shelter and refuge from a very violent situation," McCaskill said.

After the bill passed in 1994, Congress reauthorized VAWA nearly unanimously in 2000 and 2005. Since then, however, Republican opposition to certain provisions have drawn the margin much closer. McCaskill said she still expects a strong bipartisan vote for the bill's passage.

The House of Representatives has not scheduled a vote on VAWA. If the bill passes, Missouri stands to receive about $6 million per year for domestic violence advocacy programs.

Related Stories

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA – Road closings this summer in downtown Columbia could make it harder to enjoy local shops and restaurants in... More >>
4 hours ago July 24, 2016 Jul 24, 2016 Sunday, July 24 2016 Sunday, July 24, 2016 3:43:00 AM CDT in News
LAKE OF THE OZARKS – One person was injured after a boat caught on fire at the 38-mile marker by... More >>
9 hours ago July 23, 2016 Jul 23, 2016 Saturday, July 23 2016 Saturday, July 23, 2016 10:10:00 PM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis has received a $1 million gift, the largest in its... More >>
14 hours ago July 23, 2016 Jul 23, 2016 Saturday, July 23 2016 Saturday, July 23, 2016 5:07:03 PM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A 51-year-old man is accused of pulling over a vehicle and acting as if he were... More >>
15 hours ago July 23, 2016 Jul 23, 2016 Saturday, July 23 2016 Saturday, July 23, 2016 4:46:46 PM CDT in News
COOPER COUNTY - A man has been charged in relation to a hostage standoff east of Boonville Friday morning. ... More >>
15 hours ago July 23, 2016 Jul 23, 2016 Saturday, July 23 2016 Saturday, July 23, 2016 4:15:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - With the extreme heat this weekend, local medical experts told people to be aware of the signs of... More >>
15 hours ago July 23, 2016 Jul 23, 2016 Saturday, July 23 2016 Saturday, July 23, 2016 3:53:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Out-of-towners from across the state are boosting sales for local businesses and restaurants downtown this weekend. The... More >>
16 hours ago July 23, 2016 Jul 23, 2016 Saturday, July 23 2016 Saturday, July 23, 2016 3:13:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Jefferson City Knights of Columbus hosted a barbecue fundraiser for the country's first Special Olympics training... More >>
17 hours ago July 23, 2016 Jul 23, 2016 Saturday, July 23 2016 Saturday, July 23, 2016 1:54:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Athletes, parents and officials across Columbia attempted to beat the heat while participating in the Show Me State... More >>
18 hours ago July 23, 2016 Jul 23, 2016 Saturday, July 23 2016 Saturday, July 23, 2016 1:21:00 PM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) — Hundreds of mourners gathered for the funeral for a Kansas City, Kansas, police captain shot... More >>
19 hours ago July 23, 2016 Jul 23, 2016 Saturday, July 23 2016 Saturday, July 23, 2016 12:10:16 PM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A federal judge has tossed out a woman's lawsuit against Home Depot over the deaths of... More >>
20 hours ago July 23, 2016 Jul 23, 2016 Saturday, July 23 2016 Saturday, July 23, 2016 11:38:15 AM CDT in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A Kansas City, Missouri , man is accused of spitting in a police officer's eye and... More >>
20 hours ago July 23, 2016 Jul 23, 2016 Saturday, July 23 2016 Saturday, July 23, 2016 11:29:44 AM CDT in News
COLUMBIA — A group of young athletes braved the high heat this morning doing more than most people do before... More >>
21 hours ago July 23, 2016 Jul 23, 2016 Saturday, July 23 2016 Saturday, July 23, 2016 10:36:00 AM CDT in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Roy Blunt has served in Congress for two decades, but as he seeks re-election to the... More >>
22 hours ago July 23, 2016 Jul 23, 2016 Saturday, July 23 2016 Saturday, July 23, 2016 9:39:32 AM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — An incoming high school senior from the Kansas City area will be one of the youngest... More >>
22 hours ago July 23, 2016 Jul 23, 2016 Saturday, July 23 2016 Saturday, July 23, 2016 9:33:00 AM CDT in News
BOONE COUNTY - The Boone County Fair had better turnout than expected with Sturgeon hosting it for the first time.... More >>
1 day ago July 23, 2016 Jul 23, 2016 Saturday, July 23 2016 Saturday, July 23, 2016 6:02:00 AM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Early Thursday morning, a man was shot during an argument with a neighbor about a “no parking” sign... More >>
1 day ago July 23, 2016 Jul 23, 2016 Saturday, July 23 2016 Saturday, July 23, 2016 12:03:00 AM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Two mid-Missouri Republican delegates said the Republican National Convention in Cleveland this week was very successful. Columbia... More >>
1 day ago July 22, 2016 Jul 22, 2016 Friday, July 22 2016 Friday, July 22, 2016 11:06:00 PM CDT in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 78°
8am 81°
9am 84°
10am 87°
11am 90°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

7:00a
KOMU 8 News Today
8:00a
Sunday TODAY with Willie Geist
9:00a
Meet the Press
7:30a
In Touch with Dr. Charles Stanley
8:30a
The Key of David
9:00a
Campmeeting

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
Hollywood Game Night
8:00p
American Ninja Warrior
7:00p
Bulletproof Heart
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Cougar Town