You can take action today to help survivors of gender-based violence. Join YWCA in urging legislators to support two important pieces of legislation.
The SAFE Act
No one should have to choose between their livelihood and their health, their family, or their safety. Yet this is the reality for far too many women and families. Currently, workers can use the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) to care for a sick or injured spouse, but cannot use it to seek protection from an abuser. This causes survivors to lose nearly eight million days of paid work each year, the equivalent of 32,000 full-time jobs. The SAFE Act allows survivors to take job protected safe leave to receive medical attention, seek legal assistance, attend court proceedings, and get help with safety planning. The SAFE Act also protects employees from being fired because they were harassed by their abuser, or sought assistance related to their abuse.
Domestic Violence and Firearms
One in four women will experience a form of domestic violence at some point in their lives. Women are overwhelmingly impacted by domestic violence, irrespective of socioeconomic status, race, ethnicity, religious affiliation and sex. While domestic violence is often dismissed as a private matter, the repercussions are tantamount to a public health epidemic: 15.5 million children in the U.S. live in homes in which they have been exposed to or experienced violence. Studies indicate that women in abusive relationships have significantly higher rates of developing health issues, such as strokes and heart attacks. And, in cases where firearms are involved, the lethality risk for the victim and her family skyrockets.