The 2023 Washington state legislative session came to an end last month and the legislature and Governor allocated an additional $50.8 million for domestic violence and other crime victim services to counter drastic funding shortfalls and decades of rising costs. This includes a permanent lift of $4 million for ongoing funding to domestic violence programs — the first in nearly two decades.
Trauma-informed advocacy services are proven to increase safety, reduce further victimization, and help domestic violence survivors and their children heal. Throughout the legislative session, hundreds of domestic violence advocates contacted state legislators, shared stories, and urged lawmakers to act in the face of potentially devastating cuts to domestic violence services across the state.
“We are grateful for the legislature’s investments in domestic violence and crime victim services,” said Em Stone, WSCADV Public Policy Director. “At a time when demand for services has never been greater, these investments will help stave off significant cuts and strengthen our state’s safety net of essential domestic violence services.”
The full legislative budget for 2023-25 Crime Victim Services includes:
- $41.3 M one-time funding to OCVA for crime victim services to address Victim of Crime Act (VOCA) shortfalls
- $8 M ongoing (additional) funding to DSHS for domestic violence emergency shelter contracted programs
- $750k ongoing funding to DCYF for Children’s Advocacy Centers
- $750k one-time/one year funding to DSHS for emergency DV shelters based on bed capacity
The legislative budget also includes the establishment of a “gender based violence services work group” to explore long-term funding solutions.