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March 2019 Legislative Update
Several MCADSV priority bills gained momentum and support during March, and the Fiscal Year 2020 state budget passed the House with no funding reductions in grant programs for domestic and sexual violence services. Two long-sought measures advanced during the month when committees passed bills that would: 1) increase housing rights for DV/SV victims by allowing them to terminate leases; and 2) allow victims of DV/SV and stalking to take unpaid leave from work to obtain services, and legal or medical assistance. MCADSV continued to work on legislation that would impose a standard of 50/50 custody in all child custody cases, seeking to exempt domestic violence victims and their children from the provision.

MCADSV’s advocacy during March included efforts in concert with public and private colleges and universities to oppose legislation that would significantly change campus proceedings to address sexual assault allegations brought under Title IX. That legislation gained attention and controversy as the proponents of Title IX bills hired nearly 30 lobbyists to help the bills pass. Other bills opposed by MCADSV did not advance in March, specifically those that would limit usage and access to public assistance benefits.

Mid-March marked the halfway point of the 2019 legislative session, and no new bills were able to be filed after March 1. The Missouri House of Representatives has filed 1,255 bills and the Senate has filed 518 bills. The General Assembly was on Legislative Spring Break from March 18-22 and returned to session on March 25.

Read about these accomplishments and remaining legislative challenges in the March edition of the MCADSV Legislative Update, available on the MCADSV website here.

All editions of the Update can be found throughout the 2019 legislative session of the Missouri General Assembly on MCADSV’s website, Public Policy page under the “Changing Laws” tab.
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