Domestic abuse victims and their advocates can breathe a little easier today after lawmakers gave them, as some have put it, the gift of life. It's a story we've followed since the start of the 2013 legislative session.
Under Governor Bobby Jindal's proposed budget, domestic violence programs throughout the state were slated to lose nearly 40 percent of their funding. Doing so would close shelters, reduce staff and eliminate services. But thanks in part to countless rallies, meetings with lawmakers and support from the public, their preliminary budget is estimated at seven point three million dollars, restoring all cuts from the last five years.
Executive Director of the Louisiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence Beth Meeks said she is extremely happy that lawmakers decided to support this cause. But that this is only one hurdle among many. Meeks said the goal is, to find a way to end domestic violence in this state and this is the first step in a long, long journey. In moving forward, Meeks will find different ways to do business in order to make this budget fit the needs of today.