Panel OKs bill on domestic violence victims’ phones, pets

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Domestic violence victims could separate their phone plan from an abuser and include pets in protective orders under a bill moving through the Indiana Legislature.

Supporters say the proposed changes to state law regarding phones and pets would remove possible obstacles to leaving abusive relationships. A House panel approved the measure 12-0 Monday.

Republican state Sen. Erin Houchin says phones are a critical connection to a support system.

Without her measure, she says there are “extremely limited” routes to changing or leaving a plan. Victims can be forced to get a new phone, potentially losing contacts and photos.

Laura Berry from the Indiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence says pets are a concern among many victims considering leaving abusive relationships. She says the measure would enable victims to leave more successfully.


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