Cuts to VAWA will Impact Local Domestic Violence Services - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Cuts to VAWA will Impact Local Domestic Violence Services

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YAKIMA, Wash--Domestic violence agencies throughout Central Washington are upset about potential federal funding cuts.

Several program directors said cuts to the federal Violence Against Women Act could have huge ramifications.

A spokesperson for the Commerce Department said Washington State could see at least a five percent funding cut for victims of crime, which could result in 50 fewer victims each year seeking protection orders.

To break it down even more, service providers in the Lower Valley and Benton and Franklin counties said depending on the level of cuts, they would have to minimize the staff time spent with families or how many nights a victim could stay at a shelter.

"I was in there {YWCA of Yakima} for about 2 and a half months, and they really helped me to get back on my feet, to get out of the situation," said Roxanne White. "They have support groups there, they have a lot of education, a lot of resources."

The Violence Against Women Act mandates stricter sentences to hold offenders accountable, and allows victims and their families access to services they need in order to rebuild their lives and find a safe environment.