Dubuque Domestic Abuse Shelter Will Remain Open Without State Funds

by Katie Wiedemann, Reporter

DUBUQUE, Iowa - Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller said the state is consolidating crime victims programs into six service regions. That includes domestic violence services, meaning some shelters will no longer qualify for state dollars. State officials said there is only enough funding to support one or two shelters per region.

Officials at one Dubuque shelter said they knew it was too small to be considered for state funding, so it's taking action to come up with its own plan.

On the limited budget the shelter makes do with what they have. With almost half their annual budget coming from the state, directors decided not to take any chances when state budgets cuts came up.

"We are going to rely on our own fundraising efforts, grants and apply to foundations," director Sr. Charla Bulko said.

Bulko is adamant about keeping this place open. She said under the state's proposed plan, the nearest shelter would be in Waverly, almost two hours away.

Bulko said most victims aren't willing to make that drive to another community.

Ninety percent of women would rather return to their abuser than leave their community, she said. That's why she said she's reaching out to the Dubuque community for financial help as they try to move forward without state assistance.

"I am positive we're to going to be able to do this," Bulko said.
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