[July 14, 2016] – Victory! This July, Governor Raimondo signed the landmark Domestic Violence Prevention Fund bill into law!
Advocating for the Domestic Violence Prevention Fund (DVPF) legislation taught me so much about the power of our voices. I spent so much time lobbying at the State House that the security guards knew me when I entered. I would talk to all of the legislators over and over; I even spent time debating with a few representatives about the bill’s importance.
There was one representative who, at the beginning, gave me a really hard time. He opposed the bill, and we got into several debates about the merits of the legislation. I will never forget that later, at one of the rallies we organized, I was at the door as he was walking in. I asked him to wear the NO MORE pin in support of domestic violence prevention. He agreed and asked for me to pin it on him. I had changed his mind! I have never felt more accomplished than in that moment because I knew that I had made a difference. I was able to help this person understand the impact of the bill and change his perspective.
The creation of the Domestic Violence Prevention Fund in RI meant so much to me. I was only 16 when I met my abuser, and I always thought that if there had been more education and resources around dating violence and domestic violence, my life would have been different. Now I feel that I was able to help others and create a better future for our children.
- Jenn, SOAR Member
Pictured: After four years of tireless advocacy, overjoyed SOAR members stand alongside Governor Raimondo and celebrate the signing of the Domestic Violence Prevention Fund—Rhode Island's first dedicated state funding for stopping the cycle of domestic violence before it starts.
Watch the RICADV's video of the ceremonial bill signing at the State House in July: