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Public Policy

2022 Policy Priorities

VOCA Gap Funding Factsheet  |  Child & Family Advocate Funding Factsheet

CCADV works at both a state and national level to create and implement policy changes that will strengthen Connecticut’s response to domestic violence. Our staff works closely with elected officials and state agency leaders to ensure comprehensive polices that meet the needs of victims and hold offenders accountable.

During each session of the CT General Assembly CCADV takes an active role in drafting legislation and organizing testimony and advocacy on legislative measures related to domestic violence. We monitor dozens of additional bills that may impact victims in large or small ways. These issues may include child custody, divorce, spousal and child support, healthcare, social justice and economic justice.

Some of the key changes we’ve facilitated in recent years to domestic violence laws and policies in our state include:

  • Securing funding for 24-hour staffing at all of Connecticut domestic violence shelters
  • Strengthening civil restraining orders and criminal protective orders to ensure gun forfeiture by offenders, as well as extending the length of civil restraining orders
  • Enhancing the definitions of strangulation, threatening  and stalking to achieve greater protection for victims
  • Implementing a statewide Model Law Enforcement Policy on Family Violence as the standard by which all law enforcement in our state respond to domestic violence
  • Increasing housing protections for victims by allowing early lease termination when they’re in danger

Our staff works closely with and/or participates in several key policy committees including:

  • CT Criminal Justice Policy Advisory Commission
  • CT Family Violence Model Policy Governing Council
  • CT Trafficking in Persons Council
  • National Network to End Domestic Violence Policy Committee
  • National Resource Center on Domestic Violence Prevention Council

2022 Legislative Session

2022 Policy Priorities

The 2022 session of the Connecticut General Assembly runs from February 9, 2022 through May 4, 2022. This year CCADV will focus on addressing the intergenerational trauma associated with domestic violence by prioritizing the needs of children. Experiencing domestic violence can have a profound effect on a child’s emotional and cognitive development, while simultaneously setting the stage for those learned behaviors to carry over into their adult relationships. This is only compounded by the ongoing impacts of the pandemic on children, many of whom missed some natural phases of social-emotional development, with those negative effects felt more acutely by children experiencing domestic violence in their homes.

Early intervention is the most effective way to stem the intergenerational transfer of trauma so often seen with domestic violence. To that end, CCADV and our 18 member organizations are calling on the state to provide annual state funding in the amount of $1,440,000 to support one full-time Child & Family Advocate at each of CCADV’s 18 member organizations. There is currently no state funding allocated to support this critical position. An average of 5,000 children are served each year by our members, but a lack of funding means that, on average, each child can only receive 2.26 hours of service annually.

In addition to securing funding for child advocacy, CCADV will continue to work to strengthen policies related to economic justice, self-sufficiency, and access to safe, affordable housing. Efforts will address both financial and safety barriers by creating common-sense policies that prioritize survivor security and limit unnecessary economic burdens. This may include lease bifurcation, efficient lease termination and security deposit return procedures, sealing of eviction proceedings until judgment, access to affordable and reliable health insurance, and prohibiting convicted domestic violence offenders from receiving alimony from their victims.

CCADV will center its work with a focus on promoting racial equity and social justice. We must uplift the voices of survivors from marginalized communities, particularly survivors of color, to ensure an equitable and accessible domestic violence service system while raising awareness about the intersection of race and domestic violence and its impacts on marginalized communities. We will seek to increase the availability and efficacy of various support options for abusers, including substance abuse treatment, mental health services, and batterer intervention programs as an alternative to traditional criminal justice responses, and increase awareness efforts within immigrant communities to ensure that immigrant survivors are aware of their rights and the services available across the state.

Finally, we will work to enhance public awareness through improved workplace climate. Domestic violence can impact the workplace whether the violence takes place there or somewhere outside the place of employment. Impacts on victim productivity and the safety of all company employees have been well-documented. Creating safe, supportive, and positive workplace climates that raise awareness about domestic violence and available resources benefit both the employer and all of its employees, including those who may be victims. 

Recent Legislative Changes

2021 Summary of Legislative Changes Related to Domestic Violence

2019 Summary of Legislative Changes Related to Domestic Violence

2018 Summary of Legislative Changes Related to Domestic Violence

2017 Summary of Legislative Changes Related to Domestic Violence

2016 Summary of Legislative Changes Related to Domestic Violence

2015 Summary of Legislative Changes Related to Domestic Violence

2014 Summary of Legislative Changes Related to Domestic Violence

*The 2020 session of the CT General Assembly was canceled due to the pandemic so there is no summary available for that year.

Recent CCADV Policy Briefs:

Support Funding for Domestic Violence Child & Family Advocates (January 2020)

Dominant Aggressor: Reducing Decades of Dual Arrest in Connecticut (February 2018)

Stalking & Intimate Partner Violence: Increasing Intervention Before Violence Escalates (March 2017)

Temporary Holds Following an Arrest: Giving Victims Time to Find Safety (March 2015)

Firearms & Domestic Violence: Protecting Victims at the Most Dangerous Time (Rev. February 2016)

Financial Abuse: Securing Economic Protections for Victims of Domestic Violence (March 2013)

Related Policy Memos:

Battered Women's Justice Project: Memorandum to the Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence on Whether to Protect Victims of Domestic Violence from Firearms Through Connecticut's Risk Warrant Statute or Through Connecticut Civil Restraining Order Statute as Ex Parte Relief (January 2016)

To learn more about the CT General Assembly, please read This is Your General Assembly.

For more information on CCADV’s policy initiatives, please contact Liza Andrews, Director of Public Policy & Communications, at (860) 282-7899 or landrews@ctcadv.org.

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If you need help or just someone to talk to, please visit CTSafeConnect.org or call or text (888) 774-2900. Advocates available 24/7.

Si necesitas información o si solo quieres conversar con alguien, por favor visite CTSafeConnect.org o llamada or texto (888) 774-2900. Los consejeros estará disponible las 24 horas del día, los siete días de la semana.