Cities, Counties, and Human Rights Commissions Across the U.S. Pass Freedom from Domestic Violence Resolutions

On October 5, 2011 the Cincinnati City Council enacted a resolution declaring that freedom from domestic violence is a fundamental human right and that it is a responsibility of state and local governments to secure this human right on behalf of its citizens. A link to the resolution and the supporting memorandum submitted by law students at the University of Cincinnati School of law is available here.

On March 19, 2012, Baltimore City Council also enacted a similar resolution following efforts by law clinic students from the University of Baltimore. A link to the Baltimore resolution is available here.

On July 17, 2012, the Miami-Dade County Board of Commissioners passed a resolution declaring freedom from domestic violence is a human right. A link to the Miami-Dade resolution is available here.

On September 6, 2012, the Seattle Human Rights Commission passed a resolution to urge the U.S. House of Representatives to pass the Senate’s comprehensive version of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). The Seattle resolution framed violence against women issues in terms of human rights, citing the U.S.’s “international obligations to enact legislation that does not discriminate and to respect and ensure the right to be protected against violence” and making specific reference to the case of Jessica Lenahan v. U.S., the UN Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women’s report on the U.S., and various human rights instruments. A copy of the Seattle resolution is available here.

On September 10, 2012, the City of Miami Springs, Florida, passed a resolution declaring freedom from domestic violence is a human right.  The language of this resolution is identical to the resolution passed by the Miami-Dade County Board of Commissioners.  A link to the Miami Springs resolution is available here.

On October 2, 2012, the Erie County Legislature in Buffalo, NY, passed a resolution declaring freedom from domestic violence to be a human right. The resolution is available here.

In October 2012, the Albany New York County Executive, Albany City Common Council, and Albany County Legislature have each passed proclamations or unanimous resolutions declaring that freedom from domestic violence is a fundamental human right. More information on the resolutions is available here.  

Also in October 2012, City and County officials in Montgomery, Alabama, signed a Domestic Violence Awareness Month Proclamation which not only declared October Domestic Violence Awareness Month for Montgomery, but also included a declaration that freedom from domestic violence is a fundamental human right. More information on the resolution is available here.  

On June 4, 2013, the DC Council passed a resolution declaring freedom from domestic violence to be a human right. The resolution is available here.

In April 2014, Travis County Commissioners Court in Texas passed a resolution declaring freedom from domestic violence to be a fundamental human right. The resolution and a legal memo submitted to the Commissioners is available here.

On May 7, 2014, Boston's City Council unanimously adopted a resolution declaring freedom from domestic violence to be a fundamental human right. The resolution is available here.

On August 12, 2014, the City Council of Jacksonville, Florida adopted a resolution declaring that the protection against relationship violence is a fundamental human right. The resolution is available here.

For additional information on these resolutions, as well as on passing a local or implementing a local resolution, click here.