DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – The partial government shutdown has halted the majority of federal grants, which is impacting domestic violence shelters and resources.
Jane Keiffer is the executive director of the Artemis Center which provides many programs for domestic violence victims.
These include therapy sessions, a 24-hour hotline, food and toiletry pantries, and assisting with the criminal court process.
Keiffer said the center is not feeling the impact of the government shutdown as much as many other more rural services are, but if it goes for much longer, they too will have to start making some changes.
“We bill the government for our services, so we still report our services and then we get paid,” said Keiffer. “So we’ve been told that our payment will not come through until after the shutdown.”
Keiffer said the center will continue to provide all of their services during the shutdown, but it will become tighter and harder to do as the shutdown continues.
“We might need to look at prioritizing,” said Keiffer. “Can we go to every court hearing, can we meet those requirements?”
She said they are able to continue their programs because the Artemis Center has an endowment they will tap into and should last a couple of months.
“But I know not every domestic violence organization is lucky, and I know some organizations are talking about layoffs and letting people go,” said Keiffer.
But using the endowment is only a temporary solution with plans to repay it when they are reimbursed by the federal government.
Keiffer said while they have no plans for any layoffs, they may have to cut back on the number of people covering a shift.
Keiffer encouraged anyone who is being impacted by the shutdown, or fears they may become impacted as the effects continue to trickle down, to contact your elected officials and voice your concerns.