A Mississippi Gulf Coast lawmaker is drafting a bill that will protect domestic-violence victims from being victimized again. Rep. Brandon Jones, D-Pascagoula, vice-chairman of the House Insurance Committee, says his legislation will prevent health-insurance companies from denying victims coverage.
Nearly one in four women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime, according to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Some victims never report cases of domestic violence, Jones said in a release, because it could mean the difference between having health insurance or being denied coverage.
In Mississippi there are no laws prohibiting insurers from using domestic abuse as a pre-existing condition and denying abuse victims health-care coverage. Insurance companies consider victims a liability, he said.
"Abuse victims are being victimized twice. When the actual crime happens and again when they are denied coverage by a health care provider," Jones said. "The legislation I am currently putting together will stop insurers from such acts." Mississippians should know that they can't be denied coverage because they are a victim of abuse, he added.
"Although there have not been any known cases in Mississippi, this is an opportunity to stop victims from being victimized twice before it begins," Jones said.
Great! This is a battle worth fighting for. Tere is so much domestic violence in this State as around the world. I am happy to see a MS Rep. voting for something of substance. My hat goes off to Representative Brandon Jones.