The Hotline Applauds the House Appropriations Committee’s Investment in Programs and Services for Survivors
AUSTIN, TX — Today, the House Appropriations Committee passed the FY 2023 Labor, Health and Human Services (LHHS) and Education appropriations bill that increases critical funding to expand support for survivors of domestic violence in the United States by providing $300 million for the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA). FVPSA is the primary federal funding stream dedicated to the support of emergency shelter and related assistance for survivors of domestic violence and their children. This bill also includes $27 million for the National Domestic Violence Hotline (The Hotline) funded through FVPSA.
The need for services has greatly increased as survivors, many of whom have been experiencing intensified abuse and increased isolation throughout COVID-19, are feeling safer in reaching out for support. From October 2021 through January 2022, The Hotline’s contact volume was up 6% – 33% when compared with the same period last year. However, this past February, volume reached historical levels when The Hotline received an average of 2,600 incoming contacts per day, representing a 53% increase from February 2021. This increase has continued month after month.
The additional funding included in the measure passed by the committee will enable The Hotline to build additional capacity through investments in staffing, technology, and operations to meet the increased need for 24/7 support for those impacted by relationship abuse in the United States. These resources will also allow for the expansion of love is respect, The Hotline’s youth prevention and healthy relationships program, and increase support to our partners StrongHearts Native Helpline and the Abused Deaf Women’s Advocacy Services (ADWAS). These important investments are vital to ensure that The Hotline, StrongHearts and ADWAS can provide survivors with the 24/7 support and services that they need.
“For more than 25 years The Hotline has answered the call to shift power back by serving each survivor with care, comprehensive support, validation, safety planning and connection to life-saving resources. However, the record number of survivors reaching out for services means we must expand our capacity to answer the call. It is incredibly important that we as a nation invest in the services and support that all survivors need on their journey to a safer future and a life free from violence,” said Katie Ray-Jones, CEO of The Hotline. “Final passage of this bill by the House of Representatives will support critical expansions in services throughout the country, and we look forward to working with the Senate as they begin their process in July.”
The Hotline thanks the tireless work and support of the House Appropriations Chairwoman Rosa DeLauro, Ranking Member Cole and members of the House Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Subcommittee, for their ongoing commitment to supporting and expanding services for domestic violence survivors. The Hotline is committed to working with lawmakers for increased funding so that services for survivors are always available.
For 25 years, the National Domestic Violence Hotline has answered the call – over 6 million calls, chats, and texts to date – of those affected by relationship abuse. As the only 24/7/365 national service provider offering services via call, chat, and text, we work to shine a light on domestic violence by supporting and advocating for survivors, providing hope in times of crisis, and promoting healthy relationships for all.
From our crisis and intervention hotline to our unprecedented data on the state of domestic violence, to prevention programs like love is respect, The Hotline works at every level to ensure a future where all relationships are positive, healthy, and free from violence. To learn more, visit thehotline.org.