9:14pm

Tue March 25, 2014
State Capitol

Voting Protections for Domestic Violence Victims

Credit ajr.com

Victims of domestic violence and sexual assault in Kentucky can now register to vote in confidentiality.  The Address Confidentiality Program is being implemented through the Secretary of State's Office.

  Lexington Domestic Violence Prevention Board Director Teri Faragher says this is another layer of protection.  "We don't know very often when a batterer gets someone's address, how they got it, but certainly these were public records, and they will remain public records unless you enroll in this program," said Faragher.

  Faragher says this protection program also allows participants to vote by absentee ballot.  She says the Address Confidentiality Program goes into effect now and could impact voting in the upcoming May primary.  To participate, a person must have either a current emergency protective or domestic violence order or be a victim of a specified offense.  Advocates for those who suffer domestic violence also continue to push for dating violence protections.  Teri Faragher says these people suffer in the same way married couples do.  "All the time we encounter victims of dating violence who's experiences are as horrific as victims of any other violence and they are in desperate need of that protection.  It is almost embarrassing at this point that Kentucky does not have a dating violence statute," said Faragher.  Legislation to allow dating partners to obtain emergency protective orders remains stalled in the Kentucky House.​