FY2015 House Budget Cuts Funding for Services - Take Action NOW
April 11, 2014
The day after the Massachusetts House of Representatives passed comprehensive domestic and sexual violence legislation, the House Ways & Means Committee recommended a FY2015 Budget that falls far short of what is already needed to meet current needs of sexual and domestic violence survivors in Massachusetts.
Many of the advances included in the legislation will go unrealized if programs do not have the resources to respond to the needs in their communities.
Programs are currently operating at levels below FY2009; they are already stretched thin as demands for services continue to increase. Alarmingly, the DCF line item 4800-1400 that supports domestic violence residential and community based services was cut 5% from FY2014 and the DPH line item 4513-1130 was barely level-funded.
Jane Doe Inc. and our 57 member programs applaud the House for its bold stand in passing the comprehensive legisltion that includes a number of our priorities. Unfortunately, the proposed funding levels will be a step backwards instead of supporting the forward thinking vision represented in the legislation. It is imperative that the Legislature match this commitment with the funding necessary to implement the changes called for and address the demand for sexual and domestic program services and expertise that will be generated as a result.
CONTACT YOUR REPRESENTATIVE TODAY!
ASK THEM TO SIGN ON AS A CO-SPONSOR BY FRIDAY APRIL 11th AND TO SUPPORT THE AMENDMENTS LISTED BELOW TO INCREASE FUNDING FOR THESE CRITICAL SERVICES!
KEEP THESE FIGURES IN MIND:
- In one day in 2013, domestic violence programs in MA served 2,234 victims. Another 343 requests for services were unmet that day (2014 NNEDV DV Census).
- In FY2013, more than 15,000 sexual assault hotline calls were answered in Massachusetts (MA Dept of Public Health). This is an increase of 2,000 over the previous year.
Without an increase in funding, sexual and domestic violence services throughout Massachusetts are once again being asked to do more with less. The advocates in these programs are already underpaid and overworked given the complex, dangerous and life-saving services they provide.
1. An amendment to bring DCF line item 4800-1400 from to $26,900,000
Amendment will also request striking out earmark language related to New Chardon.
Lead Sponsor:Rep Thomas Stanley
To co-sponsor this amendment, please contact Mark Phillips at firstname.lastname@example.org or 617-722-2230.
- The HWM budget recommends $21,841,360 which is more than $900,000 below FY14 funding for this line.
- This line item funds Domestic Violence emergency shelter, transitional housing and community based services across the Commonwealth.
2. An amendment to bring DPH line item 4513-1130 to $7,350,000
Lead Sponsor: Representative Malia
To co-sponsor this amendment, please contact Liana Poston at email@example.com or 617-722-2060.
- The HWM budget recommends $5,718,990, which is level funding to FY14 but still significantly below FY2009 funding (gap of $672,687).
- This line item funds Rape Crisis Centers throughout Massachusetts as well as batterer intervention programs, services for refugees and immigrant survivors and LGBQT survivors, as well as prevention funding.
3. An amendment to bring the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner(SANE) and Pedi-SANE line item (DPH 4510-0810) to $4,100,000
Lead Sponsor: Representative Denise Garlick
To co-sponsor this amendment, please contact Amanda Bernardo office Amanda.firstname.lastname@example.org or x 8880.
- The SANE program currently requires more than $500,000 over FY14 just to continue to operate at level services in FY15, due to collective bargaining issues.
- In order to address any possible expansion of SANE/Pedi-SANE services, additional funding is essential.
THANKS IN ADVANCE TO THE FOLLOWING -CO-SPONSORS.
This list is as of 11:23 AM on Friday, April 11, 2014. We will update this list throughout the process.
DPH line item 4513-1130
Lead: Rep Malia (list of co-sponsors per Rep’s office)
Rep. Heroux (per his office)
DCF line item 4800-1400
Lead: Rep Stanley (list of co-sponsors per Rep’s office)
Rep. Heroux (per his office)
Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner(SANE) and Pedi-SANE line item (DPH 4510-0810)
Lead: Rep Garlick (partial list from Rep’s office, may be others)
Rep Toomey (per his office)
Rep Heroux (per his office)