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Tomorrow are the South Carolina primaries, and former VP Joe Biden leads in the poll, followed by winner of the first three contests, Sen. Bernie Sanders and businessman Tom Steyer. Some Republican South Carolinians may vote for Sanders because they want closed primaries.

KY State Capitol Rally for Domestic Violence Bill

January 19, 2010

FRANKFORT, Ky. - New proposed legislation would get Kentucky off the list of states that do not allow domestic violence protective orders to be issued in the cases of unmarried couples who don't have children together.

Sherry Currens, executive director of the Kentucky Domestic Violence Association, says House Bill 30 would let women get such a court order if the person they're dating becomes violent. Currens says it will also help end any misconception that domestic violence only happens between husbands and wives.

"In dating relationships, we know that women from 16 to 24 have a three times higher rate of violence than older women."

In the past three years, 49 Kentucky women have been killed by their partners. The proposed legislation is vital to making sure that whether they are married or dating, women have the same protections against violence, Currens says.

Even in casual dating relationships, tendencies toward violence can escalate into dangerous situations for victims, she adds.

"Abusers know where they go to school, where they live, who their friends are. We can stop them before additional violence occurs."

Similar legislation has been introduced before, without success. But Currens says House Bill 30 would clear up some murky waters that have left many domestic violence victims afraid to come forward.

"We're sending the message that it's not okay, and that they have community support that it's not okay."

The student-led rally begins at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 20, in Room 171 of the State Capitol Annex.

Tom Joseph/Diane Ronayne, Public News Service - KY