Ohio Democratic Lawmakers Introduce Common Sense Legislation To Protect Domestic Violence Victims
Yesterday in Columbus, State Representative Nickie J. Antonio and Janine Boyd introduced legislation to better protect victims of domestic violence from their abuser by requiring those convicted of a domestic violence crime or served a civil protection order (CPO) to temporarily turn over their firearms to law enforcement.
“Separating deadly weapons from a domestic abuser weakens their power over the victim. By stopping gun violence before it starts, we can stop burying innocent people who should have been legally protected under a CPO,” said Antonio. “It’s common sense: domestic abusers should not have access to guns.”
According to Center for American Progress, the most dangerous time period for victims in abusive relationships is immediately after they file a civil protection order. Additionally, the risk of homicide at the hands of an intimate partner increases eight times when a gun is in the home.
Dubbed the “Domestic Violence Victim Protection Act,” the representatives’ proposal seeks to address this volatile time period by allowing judicial discretion in cases of temporary protection orders – allowing a judge to order the surrender of firearms while a temporary restraining order is in effect.
“On behalf of the victims of domestic violence – those whom we've lost and those whom we hope to save with our bill – I hope my Republican brothers and sisters will support empowering local law enforcement and courts in their vital efforts to de-escalate some of the most dangerous domestic situations in our state,” said Boyd.
The Domestic Violence Victim Protect Act creates a state-level enforcement mechanism that would require an individual to transfer their firearms to a law enforcement agency or a federally licensed firearms dealer within twenty-four hours of the issuance of a court-order. The legislation also adds federal law to Ohio statutes by prohibiting gun possession by criminals convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence charges and by those subject to permanent protection orders.
The bill now awaits assignment to a House Committee where the proposed legislation can receive testimony from interested parties. If this bill is of interest to you, Representatives Antonio and Boyd encourage you to reach out to their offices in Columbus for more information on how to get involved.
State Representative Nickie J. Antonio (D-Lakewood) is honored to be serving her fourth term in the Ohio House of Representatives.
State Representative Nickie J. Antonio (D-Lakewood) is honored to be serving her fourth term in the Ohio House of Representatives. Representing the 13th House District, she was also appointed to serve on the Democratic Caucus leadership team as Minority Whip during the 132nd General Assembly, having previously served as Minority Whip in the 131st General Assembly, and Assistant Minority Whip for part of the 130th. Antonio’s district includes the City of Lakewood and parts of Cleveland’s West Side: The Detroit Shoreway (Gordon Square Arts District), The Stockyards, West Boulevard, Cudell, The Village of Linndale, and a section of Ohio City neighborhoods.
Antonio currently serves as the highest ranking Democratic member of the Health and Aging Committee. Additionally, she serves on the Finance and Appropriations Committee, Finance Subcommittee on Higher Education, Rules and Reference Committee and the Joint Medicaid Oversight Committee. Antonio is also a member of the Ohio House Democratic Women's Caucus—previously serving as chair—and is state director for the Women Legislators’ Lobby.
Rep. Antonio is known as a civic-minded public servant who is concerned with the quality of life of those around her. Her commitment to social justice advocacy spans multiple decades, extending into public policy after her election to Lakewood City Council in 2005. During her tenure on the council, Antonio chaired the Economic Development, Housing, and Human Services committees; served on the Public Works and Finance Committees; and was the council representative for both the Lakewood Hospital Board and Community Relations Board. As councilwoman, Antonio facilitated successful strategies for economic development through proactive policies such as the sidewalk-dining legislation, which reversed a long-lasting city ordinance prohibiting restaurant patrons from being seated by the sidewalk. Antonio also supported environmental legislation that reduced the rate of toxic fuel emissions. During her five-year period on the council, Antonio was a persistent proponent of diversity appreciation and understanding through the Lakewood Community Relations Advisory Commission, of which she is a founder.
The first in her family to graduate from college, Antonio holds a Master of Public Administration Degree from the Maxine Levin College of Urban Affairs at Cleveland State University and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Education, also from CSU. Antonio is an alumnus of the Harvard Kennedy School Senior and Executive Leadership program for State and Local Governments, and also a graduate of Lutheran West High School in Rocky River, Ohio.
A former special education teacher and non-profit executive director for a women’s outpatient drug/alcohol treatment program, Antonio worked for nearly twenty years as a consultant for non-profits and governmental agencies in Northeast Ohio, and served as administrator for a multi-county HIV/AIDS regional planning group. While fulfilling these positions, Antonio was also an Adjunct Professor at CSU, teaching courses in Women’s Studies and Public Administration. She continues her civic involvement through her leadership roles in numerous community groups such as the non-profit Cleveland Tenants Organization, of which she is a board member.
Because of the nature of her social justice advocacy and activity, Antonio is known as a collaborative community builder and organizer. She is an enthusiastic supporter of the arts and civic engagement as effective tools to develop local and statewide viability and economic success. Antonio is also a certified coach and continually advocates for the benefits to society as a whole when individuals are valued and encouraged to rise to their highest potential and purpose.
Daughters Ariel and Stacey, both Lakewood High School graduates, have made Rep. Antonio and wife Jean Kosmac very proud as the girls engage in their post-secondary pursuits.