COLUMBUS (WDTN) – The latest number of domestic violence fatalities in Ohio has been released by the Ohio Domestic Violence Network.
Compiling their data from media reports, the organization found from July 1, 2017 to June 30, 2018 at least 91 people were killed as a result of domestic violence.
Advocates say the State needs to do more to educate Ohioans about domestic violence and prevent it.
There were 69 cases involving domestic violence that ended in the death of 91 people.
A gun was involved in 71% of those fatal incidents.
Bridget Mahoney is a domestic violence survivor, the chair of the Ohio Domestic Violence Network, and a former news anchor.
“I left my position in northeast Ohio to move to Cincinnati, Ohio to try and get away from it, and it only made it worse,” said Mahoney.
She says the state is not doing enough to protect its people.
“The way that we are going to bring those numbers down is through prevention, education, awareness and belief of the victims,” said Mahoney.
And Mahoney says the only way that prevention and education happens is through funding.
“Pennsylvania, right next door to the east of us, $15 million dedicated each year to [domestic violence]; the average state $7.5 million; Ohio… zero,” said Mahoney.
She wants a line item in the budget to fund prevention and education efforts.
Mahoney also wants lawmakers to stop dragging their feet on two pieces of legislation currently in front of them that could make life better for domestic violence victims.
One bill would recognize strangulation as domestic violence, something the State currently does not.
According to the organization, you are seven times more likely to be killed by your partner if they have strangled you.
The other bill would create anti-SLAPP laws to protect victims from frivolous lawsuits meant to discourage them from speaking out.
Despite support for the former bill, neither is anywhere close to passing.
Mahoney says they just aren’t a priority for the party in power at the Statehouse.