Current policies supported by YWCA Dayton
Ohio Senate Bill 7: This bill aims to amend the Ohio revised code to specify that a person does not need to be formally served with a protection order or consent agreement to be convicted of violating the order. In order to prosecute someone under this law, the prosecution must prove that the individual had actual notice of the order or agreement and recklessly violated it.
Why does YWCA Dayton support it? This piece of legislation will arm victims of domestic violence with protection orders on issuance, and empower them to formally notify their perpetrators of the order if they are approached, rather than having to rely on the state.
Update 6/28/17: SB 7 was signed into law by Gov. John Kasich!
Ohio Senate Bill 150: This legislation aims to amend the Ohio revised code to prohibit a person convicted of domestic violence or assault of a family member, or a person subject to certain protection orders, from having a firearm, and to establish a procedure for surrendering all firearms in that person's possession.
Why does YWCA Dayton support it? 26 states and Washington DC already have laws that prohibit people who have either been convicted of domestic violence or are subject to a domestic-violence restraining orders from owning firearms. The laws passed by those states have reduced gun violence against women, as the presence of a gun in a situation of intimate-partner violence makes it five times more likely that a woman will be killed.
Ohio Senate Bill 4: This bill aims to amend sections 2951.041 and 2953.38 and to enact section 2953.521 of the Revised Code to support victims of human trafficking caught up in the criminal justice system by allowing for the expungement of charges, not guilty findings, and convictions other than rape, aggravated rape, and murder that were a result of their victimization. This bill would also expand the category of individuals allowed to apply to the court for intervention in lieu of conviction to include victims of compelled prostitution.
Why does YWCA Dayton support it? This bill would serve to eliminate the issues in the 2012 Safe Harbor Act and break down the barriers to obtaining stable housing and employment that victims of human trafficking face due to their criminal record. These victims are more vulnerable to further abuses without access to safe shelter and opportunities to meet their basic needs.
Ohio House Bill 97: This bill is designed to remove language from the revised code which currently allows for marital exceptions for certain sexual offenses including rape, sexual battery, unlawful sexual conduct with a minor, gross sexual imposition, sexual imposition, importuning, and public indecency.
Why does YWCA Dayton support it? Ohio is one of just 13 states which legally treat marital rape differently from other forms of rape. Under current Ohio law, which was last amended in 1986, a person cannot be prosecuted for rape and other sexual crimes against their spouse, unless their spouse does not live with them or there is some “force or threat of force”. YWCA Dayton agrees with sponsoring Representative Kristin Boggs; “Women and men experiencing sexual violence at the hands of their spouses should not be denied the right to seek justice just because they happen to be married to the offender.”
Ohio Issue 1: Marsy’s Law is a proposed constitutional amendment which, if passed, would replace the 1994 Ohio Victims' Rights Amendment with language that would expand the existing rights and establish new rights for victims of crime and their loved ones.
Update 11/7/17: Issue 1 passed!
Ohio House Bill 94: This bill would designate the month of February as "Teen Dating Violence Awareness Month" in the state of Ohio to increase public awareness of teen dating violence.
Why does YWCA Dayton support it? 57% of teens know someone who has been physically, sexually, or verbally abusive in a dating relationship and currently, state laws define domestic violence only as abuse perpetrated by a current or former spouse, co-habitant, or co-parent. This leaves dating partners without protections afforded to other current or former intimate partners. HB 94 will help raise awareness regarding teen dating violence in hopes of stopping abuse before it starts and helping victims reach safety from their abuser.
Update 10/11/17: HB 94 passed both the House and the Senate!