ATLANTA, GA (WABE) – Last year, the Washington-based Violence Policy Center ranked Georgia the sixth highest in the nation for the rate of women killed by men. To address that statistic, advocates against sexual assault and domestic violence turned out at the Georgia Capitol Thursday for Stop Violence Against Women Day.
Barbara Maples escaped her abusive marriage with the help of anti-domestic violence pamphlets that were smuggled to her by her children.
“I couldn’t have done it without the support of these agencies, shelters and support groups.”
Maple says she was one of the lucky ones because she got out alive. But not everyone in Maple’s position finds a way out. That’s why Greg Loughlin with the Georgia Commission on Family Violence says the state’s current ranking of women killed by men is unacceptable.
“Something must change, and I have faith that better days are ahead and something will change.”
Loughlin says one sign of hope is in the Governor’s proposed budget. He says anti-violence advocates are pleased the Governor is calling for state and not federal funding for domestic violence and rape crisis centers, and that the Governor is proposing to keep funding for those centers around $12 million dollars. But advocates say once the economy improves more money should be devoted to domestic violence and rape crisis services. Anti-violence advocates say last year 3,000 women and children were turned away from domestic violence shelters in the state, because there was not enough room.