Today, the Senate Commerce Committee marked up the “Safe Connections Act,” a bill introduced by Senators Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), and Jacky Rosen (D-Nev.) to help survivors of domestic violence cut ties with their abusers and separate from shared wireless phone plans, which can be exploited to monitor, stalk, or control victims. Public Knowledge urges Congress to pass the bill to make it easier for survivors to escape abuse.
The following can be attributed to Greg Guice, Government Affairs Director at Public Knowledge:
“The COVID-19 pandemic has unfortunately highlighted another persistent public health crisis — domestic abuse. Victims of abuse experience significant financial hardship as they seek a way out of their horrific circumstances, often while facing the double threat of physical harm from their abusers in the process.
“We support this legislation because it protects victims by mitigating the risk of having their location tracked by their abuser, enabling them to separate their mobile service account from their abuser’s account while also providing financial support through the Lifeline program to help victims stay connected to their communities.
“Escaping domestic abuse is already a difficult, chilling experience fraught with worry and fear. This bill helps survivors afford to make the choice that benefits them as they take the step to disentangle from an abusive situation. We commend Sen. Schatz and the other bill sponsors for working to help people in their hour of need. We urge Congress to pass the Act.”
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