5 Minutes Is All You Need to Support Domestic Violence Survivors and Their Pets
Earlier this year, U.S. Senators Gary Peters (D-MI) and Dean Heller (R-NV) reintroduced the Pet and Women Safety Act or PAWS Act, which did not make it to the floor for a vote in 2016. The bicameral, bipartisan legislation seeks to provide funding for domestic violence shelters that acknowledge pets as part of the family that cannot be left behind.
Abusers often use pets as pawns, and survivors tend to remain in abusive relationships out of concern for the welfare and safety of their pets. To help raise awareness about this issue, Bayer Animal Health launched the "PAWS: Share the Story" campaign.
By spending just five minutes, you can help and join the cause:
- Watch and share the video to raise awareness of the PAWS Act (video lasts just over two minutes)
- Use the electronic form to submit letters to your Congressional representatives (takes about two minutes)
Did You Know?
71 percent of pet-owning women entering emergency shelters reported that their batterer had injured, maimed, killed or threatened family pets for revenge or to psychologically control victims.
48 percent of domestic violence survivors report they are unable to escape their abusers because they are concerned about what will happen to their pets when they leave.
Bayer donated a total of $60,000 to three domestic violence shelters across the country that support pets involved in domestic abuse:
- Noah's Animal House in Las Vegas
- Rose Brooks Shelter in Kansas City, Mo.
- Urban Resource Institute in New York City
The PAWS Act:
- Expands existing federal domestic violence protections to include threats or acts of violence against a victim’s pet.
- Provides grant funding to programs that offer shelter and housing assistance for domestic violence victims with pets.
- Requires the full amount of the victim's losses for purposes of restitution in domestic violence and stalking offenses to include any costs incurred for veterinary services relating to physical care for the victim's pet.
Visit PetAndWomenSafety.com to learn more about "PAWS: Share the Story."
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