Who Will Leave the Light on for Them?

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

The state of California is going through a real rough patch. First CalWORKS and Healthy Families was on the chopping block, now the Governor has decided that 100% of the state’s Domestic Violence funding is not needed.  It is – a moving target.

If you had the choice to flee with your children to live on the streets or to stay with your abuser – which would you choose? What if you had no family or support system to turn to for help? It’s already been reported that both child abuse and domestic violence have spiked during the recession. Cutting domestic violence programs will lead to silent deaths. Shelters will close. Where will these women and their families go?  A homeless shelter? My understanding is that many homeless shelters will not take battered women due to privacy, safety, and legal issues.  In San Francisco, for example, the homeless and victims of domestic violence (many of whom are, uh, homeless) are handled under two different departments – the Department of Homeless Services and the Department on the Status of Women, respectively.  Why? No clue. If anyone out there has more insight into this please post a comment below.

Where will they go?  Will the state’s most vulnerable women and children have to start camping out in their very own tent city before we – Jane Q. Public – will say that we’ve had enough? This IS a women’s issue. This IS a human rights issue. Who will leave the light on for them?

What YOU CAN DO (California residents):

1) Contact Senator Leland Yee and tell him you support his bill to save domestic violence programs.

2) Take action on StopFamilyViolence.org by filling out the online petition to send to the Governor and your state legislator.