New domestic violence bill to be signed soon

NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – Speaker of the House Robert DeLeo says he’s closing in on a new domestic violence bill. 22News is working for you with information on when this bill will be released.

DeLeo says the bill will be presented sometime next week and it aims to better help victims of domestic violence.

Although DeLeo has not given any specifics, he has been working with Attorney General Martha Coakley on this issue for months.

22News spoke with the Director of Safe Passage, a center that provides support for families or individuals struggling with domestic violence. She says there’s still a lot people don’t know about the issue.

“Domestic violence very often involves physical violence physical abuse, but it doesn’t have to it can be emotional abuse and just focus around psychological or emotional abuse, sexual abuse,” said Marianne Winters.

Last October, the Senate passed a bill that allows victims of domestic violence to take time off work without the fear of losing their job. It also made strangulation a felony offense as opposed to a misdemeanor.

Safe Passage offers counseling and support for victims. For more information on their services, Click Here.

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