Last week SB 97 passed unanimously in the Wisconsin state senate. (See our previous blog posts below.) This week its companion bill AB 141 is scheduled for a public hearing in the Assembly Judiciary Committee.
The meeting is Thursday, May 14 at 10 am in Room 300 Northeast. In order for the bill to be brought before the full Assembly for a vote, it must be passed by the Judiciary Committee.
Committee members will be listening to testimony from those who care about this issue, ranging from victims of domestic violence and/or their family and friends to those professionals who serve victims or pets in need.
One of the bill’s co-authors, Rep. Andre Jacque said he is pleased that the bill has had “strong and consistent bipartisan support” thus far, fully expecting it to continue in the Assembly.
“This is extremely important legislation that is vital to enhancing the protective element of restraining orders,” he stated. “A threat of harm to a pet is one more element of control that an abuser has over a victim, and as we’ve seen, an effective tool of manipulation within an abuser’s arsenal."
That’s true. Abusers need to be stopped. Everyone, whether two or four legged, deserves a life free from violence. Let’s hope that the Judiciary Committee allows this bill to carry on!
Denice Ryan Martin, a volunteer with Wisconsin Voters for Companion Animals, is a freelance writer, licensed social worker and animal welfare advocate. She first wrote about this topic in May 2013. http://www.wivotersforcompanionanimals.com/blog/leave-no-pet-behind-why-wisconsin-needs-a-law-to-protectpetsfrom-domestic-violence