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Like Tall-Tales and Fairy Tales? Then You'll Love the SAFE Act!

Recently Rep. Ted Poe and Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard introduced the Security and Financial Empowerment (SAFE) Act. Normally you'd expect a bill to be based on well-accepted facts and good research. But the Findings of this bill include tall-tales at best, and fairytales at worst.

Here are some of the bill's goofiest Findings:

  • FINDING: "Violence against women has been reported to be the leading cause of physical injury to women."

    FACT: Family violence researcher Richard Gelles had this to say about this Finding: "Unfortunately, as good a sound bite as it is, the statement is simply not true." The Centers for Disease Control reports that in 2006 (the most recent year that data is available) all of the leading causes of injury to women were unintentional. Intentional injury to women accounted for only 1.4% of injury-related Emergency Department visits. (See http://mchb.hrsa.gov/whusa08/hstat/hi/pages/226i.html#chart1)

  • FINDING: "According to the recent study by the National Institutes of Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, each year there are over 5,300,000 non-fatal violent victimizations committed by intimate partners against women."

    FACT: This Finding comes from the National Violence Against Women Survey, but conveniently ignores the fact that the survey also found 3.2 million intimate partner victimizations against men. Also, the survey was done by the National Institute of Justice, not the National Institutes of Health.

  • FINDING: "Domestic and sexual assault victims have been subjected to discrimination by private and State employers, including discrimination motivated by sex and stereotypic notions about women.."

    FACT: "... Motivated by sex and stereotypic notions about women" – this vague and unsupported statement resembles an ideological rant, not an objective Finding.

Rep. Ted Poe, in sponsoring the bill, is out of step with his party. Please contact two key Republican Congressional leaders, Rep. David Camp and Rep. Howard McKeon, and request they oppose H.R. 739.

Rep. David Camp
Phone: (202) 225-3561
Fax: (202) 225-9679
Rep. Howard McKeon
Phone: (202) 225-1956
Fax: (202) 226-0683

If possible, please mention RADAR's analysis of the bill: http://www.mediaradar.org/docs/RADARanalysis-HR739-SAFE-Act.pdf

And, as always, remember to be polite.

Date of RADAR Release: March 3, 2009

R.A.D.A.R. – Respecting Accuracy in Domestic Abuse Reporting – is a non-profit, non-partisan organization of men and women working to improve the effectiveness of our nation's approach to solving domestic violence. http://mediaradar.org