National Network to End Domestic Violence to Release 17th Annual Domestic Violence Counts Report in Virtual Congressional Briefing
March 16, 2023
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: NNEDV Communications team (Communications@NNEDV.org)
The 17th Annual Domestic Violence Counts Report Highlights Survivors’ and Programs’ Urgent Needs and Recommends Federal Funding and Policy Changes
Washington, D.C. — Today, the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) will release the findings from its 17th Annual Domestic Violence Counts Report at a bipartisan Congressional briefing at 2:00 PM ET. The Zoom event will be broadcast on Facebook Live. The annual report documents the number of people who sought domestic violence services in a single 24-hour period, as well as the types of services requested, the number of service requests that went unmet due to a lack of resources, the issues and barriers domestic violence programs face as they strive to provide services to domestic violence victims, and the necessary federal policy changes that could help survivors and programs.
The briefing will be held in cooperation with U.S. Representative Rosa DeLauro (D-CT-3), U.S. Representative Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA-1), U.S. Representative Lucy McBath (D-GA-7), and U.S. Representative Gwen Moore (D-WI-4). It will feature a discussion moderated by Sandeep Bathala, NNEDV’s Vice President of External Affairs, with panelists Karen Cheeks-Lomax, CEO of My Sister’s Place, White Plains, NY; Karimah Dillard, LMSW, Director of Policy, Georgia Coalition Against Domestic Violence; Beth Young, survivor; and NNEDV’s Senior Director of Public Policy, Monica McLaughlin.
“Policymakers, journalists, national experts, and advocates at every level rely on NNEDV’s annual Domestic Violence Counts Report to understand survivors’ urgent needs, the issues and barriers domestic violence programs face providing services to victims, and the funding and policy changes necessary to make sure programs have the resources to meet survivors’ needs for safety, security, and healing,” said Sandeep Bathala, NNEDV’s Vice President of External Affairs.
“NNEDV’s Domestic Violence Counts Report reminds me that, although we have made progress through the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) and the Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) Fix—federal legislation I was proud to sponsor—there is more work to be done to make sure no one is denied the desperately needed services they are seeking. I look forward to working with NNEDV to continue our work to end domestic violence,” said Representative Brian Fitzpatrick.
“Domestic violence survivors, their families, and their children seeking safety and support need to know it’s available for them. NNEDV’s annual Domestic Violence Counts Survey highlights the essential work being done every day at domestic violence programs across the country and how much more needs to be done to make sure no one is denied the help they need. I am committed to working with my colleagues and NNEDV to advocate for laws and resources needed to end domestic violence,” said Representative Lucy McBath.
The Domestic Violence Counts Survey took place on September 7, 2022, nearly a year and a half after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Programs and survivors were still navigating the changes and challenges brought on by the pandemic—moving from handling it as a short-term crisis to long-term changes. Survivors continue to grapple with the ongoing impacts of the pandemic, along with an economic downturn, various natural disasters, ongoing discrimination, and other challenges that continue to affect their access to safety, support, justice, and economic security. The pandemic and its impacts on survivors—particularly those who were already experiencing systemic violence and marginalization—will continue to unfold. Importantly, this year, our survey also collected data about programs providing culturally specific services to immigrant survivors and survivors of color—groups that may face increased barriers to accessing the specialized services they need.
The 17th Annual Domestic Violence Counts Report found that on September 7, 2022, 79,335 adult and child victims of domestic violence received lifesaving services, including 44,882 victims who found refuge in emergency shelters, transitional housing, hotels, motels, or other housing; and 34,453 victims who received non-residential supportive services related to legal needs, housing advocacy, transportation, mental health, public benefits, and more. On that same day, local programs were unable to meet 12,692 requests for services—primarily requests for housing or emergency shelter—because they lacked sufficient resources.
“The lifesaving services local domestic violence programs provide for victims—from court advocacy to emergency safe houses to crisis support and 24-hour hotlines—help people build lives free from abuse and make our communities safer. I am proud to have championed increased investments to support survivors in the 2023 appropriations package. And, I am committed to working with the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV), coalitions, and local programs to continue this work to improve the response to survivors, their families, and their children,” said Representative Rosa DeLauro.
“Domestic violence programs continue to face insufficient funding at the federal, tribal, state, territorial, and local levels. This funding can mean the difference between staying with an abuser or safely leaving. It’s unacceptable for survivors to be denied the help they need, often leaving them with no choice but to remain with an abuser and vulnerable to further violence, potentially with deadly consequences,” said Monica McLaughlin, NNEDV’s Senior Director of Public Policy.
“Survivors, advocates, and programs deserve better. Policymakers at every level have the power to make a difference. NNEDV encourages the Biden-Harris Administration and Congress to take action making the necessary federal policy and funding changes that will ultimately address survivors’ long-term security, including restoring Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) funding, as well as increasing essential funding for domestic and sexual violence programs in Fiscal Year 2024 appropriations,” McLaughlin continued.
In addition to highlighting the need for increased funding and appropriations, the 17th Annual Domestic Violence Counts Report outlines necessary policy changes that can help survivors, including centering the needs of Communities of Color in all legislation, appropriations, and policymaking; enacting policies that reduce domestic violence homicides and community violence; enacting policies that promote economic justice and financial security; advancing access to safe, affordable housing; reauthorizing and improving the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA); ensuring reproductive justice and access to reproductive health care for survivors who face reproductive coercion; and strengthening protections for immigrant and other marginalized survivors, among others.
NNEDV is grateful to Amazon/Ring and Element 74, Gold Sponsors of the 17th Annual Domestic Violence Counts Report, for their support.
The National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) represents the 56 state and U.S. territorial coalitions against domestic violence. NNEDV is a social change organization with a mission to create a social, political, and economic environment in which violence against women no longer exists. NNEDV works to make domestic violence a national priority, change the way society responds to domestic violence, and strengthen domestic violence advocacy at every level.