Rep. Ashford Supports Bill To Establish Rape Crisis Center Funding
Proposal includes $2 million over next two years, trust fund and victim advocates

The Ohio House unanimously approved Substitute House Bill 108 today, legislation to provide first-time funding to some 27 rape crisis programs throughout the state by appropriating $2 million from the General Revenue Fund. HB 108 also establishes a Rape Crisis Program Trust Fund administered by the Attorney General and funded through registration fees of sex offenders, new fines for sexually oriented offenses and donations.

“This legislation is past due,” said Rep. Ashford. “Although I would have liked to see more funding dedicated to these meaningful programs and services for victims of sexual assault, I think this is a step in the right direction. I am hopeful that this won’t be the last you hear from the Ohio House on adequate funding for rape crisis programs.”

The State Victims Assistance Advisory Council, which provides recommendations and advocacy for victim services and polices, would gain two new members under HB 108.

If the bill becomes law, Ohio would be more in line with neighboring states that provide dedicated state funding for similar rape crisis programs and services. Currently, Ohio’s network of rape crisis programs provides coverage to 37 counties and receives no state funding.

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