Senate gives unanimous support to Herbig bill to increase funding for sexual, domestic violence services
AUGUSTA — The Maine Senate on Tuesday gave unanimous support in an initial vote for a bill introduced by Sen. Erin Herbig, D-Belfast, that would provide increased funding for sexual assault and domestic violence services in Maine. LD 1171, “An Act To Prevent Sexual and Domestic Violence and To Support Survivors,” represents the first increase in funding for such programs in nearly two decades.
“Sexual and domestic violence have affected everyone in our state – regardless of background, geography or income. Even if you have not personally suffered from these terrible crimes, you know someone who has – maybe a cousin, a brother, a grandparent or a friend,” said Sen. Herbig. “The Senate’s strong support of this bill is a tremendous step in the right direction, to help victims across Maine become survivors.”
LD 1171 would provide $5 million over the next two fiscal years for sexual assault and domestic violence prevention and victim services, using money from the state’s general fund. State statistics show that one in five Mainers suffers sexual assault at some point in their life, and a domestic violence assault is reported to Maine law enforcement approximately once every two hours.
The bill has been signed by 126 cosponsors.
The bill faces further votes in the Maine House and Senate.