Wisconsin Voices Tell Senate Judiciary Committee to Prevent Domestic Violence Killings

Madison—Today, the United States Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing on protecting women from gun violence. Two of the five speakers, Elvin Daniel and Racine County Sheriff Chris Schmaling, have Wisconsin connections. End Domestic Abuse Wisconsin (End Abuse) praised Mr. Daniel and Sheriff Schmaling for speaking out and telling Congress to take commonsense steps to prevent domestic violence homicides.

“We are grateful Chairman Leahy and the Senate Judiciary Committee have prioritized domestic violence homicide prevention,” said Patti Seger, executive director of End Abuse, “and we are extremely proud that two of our own testified today, acting as voices for victims in Wisconsin and across the country.”

The two Wisconsin speakers approach the issues of domestic violence and gun violence with different experiences, but they shared a common point of view: that Congress should do more to keep guns out of the hands of domestic abusers.

Elvin Daniel’s sister was murdered by her estranged husband, along with two of her co-workers at the Azana Spa and Salon in Brookfield in 2012. Although he was prohibited from buying a gun because of an active domestic abuse restraining order, Radcliffe Haughton easily obtained a firearm through the private sale loophole in the federal background check system.

Racine County Sheriff Christopher Schmaling spoke about the connection between guns and domestic violence homicides from his perspective as a law enforcement official. In Racine, Sheriff Schmaling has been a leader in improving the enforcement of laws that restrict domestic abusers’ access to guns, and he advocated for a state law that verifies firearm surrender in abuse cases.

“Since 2000, End Domestic Abuse Wisconsin has analyzed and reported on every instance of domestic violence homicide in Wisconsin,” said Seger. “While many individual tragedies, like the Azana Spa shooting, are etched in our minds, we don’t always see the larger patterns. Each year, guns are the most common weapon in domestic violence homicides—they account for more killings than all other weapons combined. Therefore, keeping guns out of abusers’ hands is one of the most critical things we can do to prevent domestic violence from claiming more lives.”

A recording of the hearing can be viewed here: http://www.c-span.org/video/?320765-1/hearing-violence-women-act&live


Selected Resources

2015-2016 End Domestic Abuse Wisconsin Legislative Agenda

This document summarizes End Domestic Abuse Wisconsin's top priorities for legislative advocacy during the 2015 to 2016 biennium. In determining what legislative efforts to support, End Abuse consults regularly with domestic violence programs, survivors of domestic violence, coordinated community response teams, and other professionals who work to address domestic violence. Our Legislative Agenda is a work in progress. We encourage legislators, local domestic violence programs, survivors and other professionals to contact us with potential legislative initiatives throughout the session.

Voting Guide for Advocates and Survivors

This guide is meant to help advocates assist their clients with the voting process. With recent law changes and court decisions, even the basics of how to cast a ballot can be very confusing  The guide covers voter registeration, ID requirements and determining where to vote. 

Development and Maintenance of Policies Prohibiting Harassment of LGBTQ People (Recorded 3-10-2015)


This webinar is about policies to promote inclusion of both LGBTQ clients and employees.  After viewing the webinar, participants will be able to list the types of policies that support an environment free of harassment and bullying of LGBTQ people, describe ways to assist staff in understanding and following the policies, and list the elements of a plan to monitor claims, address them seriously, and document their corrective action(s). 

VIEW AND LISTEN. You will be directed to a short survey and the link to the recorded webinar.


The series is provided by the Department of Children and Families (DCF) Domestic Abuse Program, and presented by Molly Herrmann, statewide training consultant and member of the End Domestic Abuse WI and WI Coalition Against Sexual Assault LGBTQ Committee. Services Act (FVPSA) federal requirements. Webinar 3 is Development and Maintenance of Policies Prohibiting  Discrimination and Harassment of LGBTQ People.

The series offers a wonderful opportunity to reflect on organization practices and culture, and to build bridges between existing knowledge and skills and innovative, emerging practices, while also meeting the DCF training requirement.

All staff of DCF domestic violence programs receiving FVPSA funding must view each webinar live (February and March 2015) or recorded.


When you have completed the recorded webinar, download the certificate below.  It can be completed electronically or by hand and printed. Handouts are also available for download.