Speaker Harrell appoints Special CDV Committee

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With more than 300 South Carolina women killed by domestic abuse over the last 10 years, House Speaker Bobby Harrell said, “There is more that we can do as a state to better protect our citizens and help prevent this type of abuse. It’s time to make South Carolina’s Criminal Domestic Violence laws better.”

Speaker Harrell announced the formation of a Special Criminal Domestic Violence Ad Hoc Committee. The committee members will work during the remaining off-session months on ways to improve South Carolina’s current CDV laws and raise public awareness by researching what other states are doing, meeting with experts and formulating new solutions.

“Our goal with this special committee is that, by the time session begins in January, the House will have a legislative framework ready to be introduced the first day we come back,” Speaker Harrell said. “Raising awareness and preventing domestic violence in South Carolina will be a priority for the House this coming year. Our state has several vital areas we need to improve upon and that is why it is important this committee begin its work now.”

Rep. Shannon Erickson, R-Beaufort, will chair the 10-member bipartisan committee. “In addition to seeking out better ways to strengthen our state’s CDV laws, I hope this committee will raise awareness of the horrible impact domestic violence inflicts on our neighbors, co-workers and friends,” Chairwoman Erickson stated. “Domestic abuse is a serious crime, and it’s time for our state to start treating it that way. Speaker Harrell has put together a committed group of diverse, hardworking Lawmakers who plan on holding batterers accountable, supporting victims’ rights and breaking the cycle of abuse.”

Other committee members: Rep. Gilda Cobb-Hunter; Rep. MaryGail K. Douglas; Rep. Ralph Shealy Kennedy; Rep. Deborah A. Long; Rep. Peter M. McCoy, Jr.; Rep. Robert L. Ridgeway, III; Rep. Edward R. “Eddie” Tallon, Sr.; Rep. Anne J. Thayer; Rep. J. David Weeks.

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