Two domestic violence programs have shut down in the past year, and the executive director of the Iowa Coalition Against Domestic Violence says more may be forced to close due to budget woes. Laurie Schipper of the Iowa Coalition Against Domestic Violence says on top of cuts in state aid, cities and counties have cut their contributions as well. Schipper says there’s a “real crisis” for domestic violence shelters and programs. The Legislature did not send Iowa’s 31 domestic violence shelters any state aid for the coming fiscal year, but Attorney General Tom Miller dipped into a victim’s compensation fund to find about $2 million. Schipper says federal funds have been cut back, too, and domestic shelters and treatment programs “are really struggling.” Schipper says that’s why the state’s “line item” appropriation is so important. Schipper says if the state funds don’t come through next year, “a significant number of shelters” will close.
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