Gun lobby clashes with domestic violence advocates over temporary restraining order legislation

Gun lobby clashes with domestic violence advocates over temporary restraining order legislation

New Orleans Democratic Rep. Aimee Freeman was handling some work at her desk Friday, April 9, 2021. The of Louisiana’s 144 legislators are arriving in Baton Rouge for the regular session of 2021, which begins Monday, April 12. A legislative proposal that would make it easier for victims of domestic violence to apply for a temporary restraining order has come under fire from Louisiana’s powerful gun lobby — though its proponents aren’t exactly sure why. House Bill 55 from New Orleans Democratic Rep. Aimee Adatto Freeman would remove the requirement that an application for a temporary restraining order include a notarized affidavit. Instead, it would allow applicants to provide a written affirmation, signed by a witness, that the facts included in the petition are true. In some portions of the state — including in the clerk of courts in Orleans, Calcasieu and Ouachita parishes — notaries aren’t immediately available in-house, often forcing victims to seek out and pay for a private notary on their own, according to Mariah Wineski, the executive director of the Louisiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence "What we found is that it was difficult for victims to get a notary in some areas of the state," Wineski said. "This is a huge step for a victim and in many cases she has only one chance to get this and she has planned and waited and agonized over the decision to come forward and ask the court system to help keep her safe." HB55 sailed through the […]

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