New York’s Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the much needed Domestic Violence Survivors Act into law. This will now allow judges to take the background of those who have survived abusive domestic violence into consideration during sentencing. It’s a BIG deal!
Black women, who experience domestic violence and intimate partner violence at substantially higher rates than other women, often get criminalized for surviving. The Domestic Violence Survivors Act challenges the narrative that there are “good” victims and “bad” victims.
This law has been a DECADE in the making! More than HALF of incarcerated women have suffered domestic abuse and the Atlantic states a 2007 report in New York showed “in the year 2005, two-thirds of women incarcerated for killing someone close to them had been abused by that person.”
Past abuse is an EXTREMELY important factor. The amazing women who have advocated and been through situations with abuse, incarceration, and criminalization helped write the law themselves. Powerful! They were directly involved in the process and now look how far everything has come!
No one should be abused in a relationship and the disproportionate effects that result in more Black women being abused, KILLED, and incarcerated exposes how little value is placed on Black lives. All Black lives matter everywhere, including at home and in a cell!