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Senator Pam Helming announced Wednesday that several measures aimed to expand protections for victims of domestic violence have been signed into law. With Senator Helming's support and advocacy, these measures passed the New York State Senate during the 2019 Legislative Session.

These measures include: S.1243B/A.4467A Allows domestic violence victims to report abuse to any law enforcement agency in New York State, regardless of where the act took place. This legislation breaks down barriers that prevent the abuse from being reported.

S.2625/A.5608 Amends definition of domestic violence to include forms of economic abuse to add identity theft, grand larceny and coercion as forms of domestic violence. Oftentimes, abusers will use identify theft and other forms of fraud to hold their victims financially captive, even after they leave the relationship.

S.3232A/A.219A Gives domestic violence victims the right to vote by mail.

"Almost each and every one of us know someone who has been a victim of domestic violence. We have to break the cycle, support victims, and hold those who commit these heinous acts responsible. These newly signed laws will make it easier for victims of domestic violence to come forward to report their abuse. However, after taking the first step of reporting their abuse, these victims must have a safe place to go. Currently, there are six counties in New York State, three alone in the Finger Lakes Region, that do not have a domestic violence shelter. Every county should have a domestic violence shelter to provide victims and their families with safe housing. I look forward to continuing to work with Safe Harbors to bring a shelter to Seneca County that will also serve families from Yates and Ontario Counties. We will work together to provide funding to our communities to prevent future abuse and tragedy," Helming said.

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