Advocates convene at capitol to support anti-violence legislation

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BATON ROUGE, La. (LCADV) - Advocates from across Louisiana will gather at the State Capitol at 9:00 a.m. on Tuesday, May 7, to encourage legislators to support laws designed to strengthen protections for domestic violence and sexual assault survivors.

This is the eighth annual Day at the Capitol, hosted by the Louisiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence (LCADV) and the Louisiana Foundation Against Sexual Assault (LaFASA). LCADV and LaFASA will have a display table in the Rotunda of the Louisiana State Capitol building from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Advocates and supporters will be speaking with legislators throughout the day to discuss domestic and sexual violence in Louisiana and how legislation can affect programs, advocates, and survivors.

LCADV has been involved in efforts to pass several bills expanding protections for victims of violence across Louisiana. These bills include HB 180 by Rep. Larry Bagley (R-Stonewall), creating the crime of interference with emergency communication, and SB 146 by Sen. Jean Paul Morrell (D-New Orleans), which would make it more difficult to jail victims of domestic violence and sexual assault for refusing to testify against their abusers.

Advocates say the bills supported this year promote the Coalition’s legislative priorities focused on increasing offender accountability and promoting policies that support the self-determination of survivors.

“We have made great strides in protecting domestic violence survivors in recent years,” said Mariah Wineski, LCADV Executive Director. “It is crucial for our laws to reflect the true nature of domestic abuse, and to center these laws around the survivor’s safety and self-determination.”

On the evening of May 6, the Louisiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence will host a legislative reception to honor champions and allies in the movement to end domestic. Several legislators, advocates, and organizations will be honored for their efforts.

“We are proud of the efforts of Louisiana’s legislators in recent years to take a stand against domestic violence,” said Wineski. “We look forward to an evening of celebration to honor those champions and the many advocates across the state who work tirelessly to support survivors each day.”

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