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The voices of survivors, member programs, and community allies, joining together in one voice, are essential in order to affect social change to end violence and oppression in our society. Every voice is important.

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"Educating our communities and elected officials about the needs of survivors in our local cities and towns requires year round focus. JDI is our pathway to informing and influencing the state and national agenda to end sexual and domestic violence." ~ Karen Cavanaugh, JDI board member and Executive Director of Womanshelter/Companeras, pictured here with a JDI delegation meeting with Congressman Niki Tsongas

JDI Advocacy Day April 10, 2012

Jane Doe Inc.'s Legislative Advocacy Day

Raise Your Voice to Build Safer Communities
Free from Sexual and Domestic Violence

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

JDI and its members will be on Beacon Hill to advocate for funding to support the life-saving and life-changing services provided by community-based sexual and domestic violence programs. Throughout the afternoon programs will visit with their legislators and share the stories of survivors from throughout the Commonwealth.

JDI is advocating restoration of several line items to their FY2009 funding levels, at which time they experienced significant, up to 23%, cuts. The line items provide funding for essential services for victims and survivors across the Commonwealth.  Read our detailed budget request and related fact sheets.

As a backdrop for the day, JDI will release findings from three recent studies in which Massachusetts was a participant.  The survey from the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) has provided us with updated information about the prevalence of sexual and domestic violence in the lives of Massachusetts residents--1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men in Massachusetts have experienced sexual victimization other than rape; 1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men in Massachusetts have experienced rape, physical violence and/or stalking by an intimate partner.  Read more about the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey.

The second study looked at non-residential domestic violence services from the perspective of survivors who have used these services. After seeking and receiving help, 95 percent of survivors surveyed were more knowledgeable about planning for their safety and more hopeful about the future. Because of the help survivors received from Massachusetts programs, an overwhelming majority also indicated that they knew more about their rights and options, knew more about community resources, felt they would achieve their personal goals and be more confident in making decisions. Findings from the complete study can be found at http://www.vawnet.org/research/MeetingSurvivorsNeeds/.

The third report took a 24-hour census of services requested from and delivered by domestic violence programs throughout the country.  In Massachusetts, 56 programs reported providing services to a staggering 1,799 adults and children. However on that same day than in September 2011, these programs 479 unmet requests for services. 

These studies reinforce what we already know—that there are many victims and survivors out there and that these programs make a difference in their lives.


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