Family abuse centers prepare for cuts

POSTED: Monday, March 14, 2011 - 4:06pm
UPDATED: Friday, April 13, 2012 - 9:54am

WACO -- Extreme budget cuts across the state led a group to the capitol Monday calling for full funding for family violence centers.

One woman told Fox 44 about her experience escaping abuse. She couldn't be identified because of fear her attacker would find her.

She says losing funding for abuse centers is a life or death matter for victims like her and her three children who had no where to turn to.

"The closer it gets for that person to come home from work, you sit there and pray that the headlights don't come in the driveway," said the victim. "Your body tenses. You have a migraine. You get nauseated with every minute that the clock ticks."

After five years of abuse and isolation, she called help.

"Planned for almost two years on how to get out. No money, No vehicle. Thank God I had one option and that was to call here," the victim told Fox 44.

One Central Texas abuse center says calls like this are happening more and more these days.

At their call center they take hundreds of calls a month from abused women, and directors worry, without state funding, crucial services would have to be eliminated.

Director of McLennan County's abuse center, Kathy Reid, says it became clear just how important those services are when she read last years list of women killed. More than 100 women were killed in Texas because of abuse. Four of those in her service area.

"Every time we think we've failed to provide an opportunity for a woman to leave a dangerous situation, we worry that she is going to wind up with serious injury or even death," said Reid.

That's what they're hoping lawmakers in Austin will recognize. Right now, they receive 80 percent of their money from the government, but they're preparing for at least a 25 percent cut in funds.



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