DCF awards money to domestic violence shelters

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - The Department of Children & Families is giving $3 million to six domestic violence centers around the state at a time when agencies are reporting a marked increase in services because of the economy.

DCF officials say current economic conditions are causing those who flee to domestic violence shelters to stay longer than normal.

A 2007-2008 study showed victims were staying an average of five to 30 days beyond the normal six-week stay.

Florida's shelters were over capacity last year by 1,261 individuals. The money, which is coming from an annual grant, will provide 120 additional beds to shelters.

DCF Secretary George Sheldon says it's crucial to support these shelters "because we know that during tough economic times, instances of domestic violence increase."

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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