Code of the District of Columbia

Subchapter III. Domestic Violence Hotline.


§ 4–551. Definitions.

For the purposes of this subchapter, the term:

(1) “Domestic violence” means a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner, dating partner, or family member. The term “domestic violence” includes physical, sexual, emotional, economic, or psychological actions or threats of actions that influence another person. This consists of any behaviors that intimidate, manipulate, humiliate, isolate, frighten, terrorize, coerce, threaten, blame, hurt, injure, or wound someone.

(2) “Domestic violence counselor” shall have the same meaning as provided in § 14-310(a)(2).

(3) “Domestic violence program” shall have the same meaning as provided in § 14-310(a)(3).

(4) “Hotline” means the Domestic Violence Hotline program established by § 4-552.

(5) “Office” means the Office of Victim Services, established by Mayor’s Order 2004-119, issued July 19, 2004 (51 DCR 7997).


(Dec. 24, 2013, D.C. Law 20-61, § 3032, 60 DCR 12472.)

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) addition of this section, see § 3032 of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-130, July 30, 2013, 60 DCR 11384, 20 DCSTAT 1827).

For temporary (90 days) addition of this section, see § 3032 of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-204, October 17, 2013, 60 DCR 15341, 20 DCSTAT 2311).

Short Title

Section 3031 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that Subtitle D of Title III of the act may be cited as the “Domestic Violence Hotline Establishment Act of 2013”.

Editor's Notes

Applicability of D.C. Law 20-61: Section 11001 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that, except as otherwise provided, the act shall apply as of October 1, 2013.


§ 4–552. Domestic Violence Hotline.

(a) The Office shall establish the Domestic Violence Hotline to provide assistance for victims and potential victims of domestic violence beginning October 1, 2014.

(b)(1) The Hotline shall:

(A) Be operated by a domestic violence program funded and supported by the Office;

(B) Provide a direct toll-free number that accepts calls and text messages;

(C) Be directly available to callers, without an intermediary agency;

(D) Be available on a 24-hour basis;

(E) Provide live assistance by domestic violence counselors; and

(F) Offer anonymity and confidentiality to enable a victim or a friend or family member of a victim to seek support without giving his or her legal name.

(2) The requirements of paragraph (1)(F) of this subsection shall not be construed to limit or supersede any mandatory reporting requirements under District law.

(c) The Office shall develop and implement an outreach campaign to educate District residents about the Hotline.


(Dec. 24, 2013, D.C. Law 20-61, § 3033, 60 DCR 12472.)

Section References

This section is referenced in § 4-551.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) addition of this section, see § 3033 of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-130, July 30, 2013, 60 DCR 11384, 20 DCSTAT 1827).

For temporary (90 days) addition of this section, see § 3033 of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-204, October 17, 2013, 60 DCR 15341, 20 DCSTAT 2311).

Short Title

Section 3031 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that Subtitle D of Title III of the act may be cited as the “Domestic Violence Hotline Establishment Act of 2013”.

Editor's Notes

Applicability of D.C. Law 20-61: Section 11001 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that, except as otherwise provided, the act shall apply as of October 1, 2013.


§ 4–553. Task force.

(a) Beginning October 1, 2013, the Office shall establish a task force to:

(1) Assess staff and technology needs of the Hotline; and

(2) Develop mechanisms for administration of the Hotline; and

(3) Develop standards that coincide with the standards used by the existing domestic violence first responder line.

(b) The task force shall include representatives from the D.C. Coalition Against Domestic Violence, governmental victim services programs, and domestic violence programs.

(c) By January 30, 2014, the task force shall transmit to the Office and to the Office of the Secretary to the Council a report that includes the assessments and developments completed pursuant to subsection (a) of this section.


(Dec. 24, 2013, D.C. Law 20-61, § 3034, 60 DCR 12472.)

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 days) addition of this section, see § 3034 of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-130, July 30, 2013, 60 DCR 11384, 20 DCSTAT 1827).

For temporary (90 days) addition of this section, see § 3034 of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-204, October 17, 2013, 60 DCR 15341, 20 DCSTAT 2311).

Short Title

Section 3031 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that Subtitle D of Title III of the act may be cited as the “Domestic Violence Hotline Establishment Act of 2013”.

Editor's Notes

Applicability of D.C. Law 20-61: Section 11001 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that, except as otherwise provided, the act shall apply as of October 1, 2013.