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Mr. Speaker, LouAnne is an elementary student in Texas. In the mornings, she eagerly awaits to be picked up by the school bus. After school, she rides the bus home, but sometimes she hesitates and slowly gets off that bus.

Once, she just sat on the bus when it pulled in front of her house. The bus driver walked to her seat and told her, ``LouAnne, this is where you get off.'' LouAnne would not leave her seat, and replied, ``Daddy hurts me and Momma.''

We should realize, Mr. Speaker, that behind the closed doors of many houses in America, violence is a way of life. It's a bad life, a sad way of life. It affects spouses and children. It affects the physical and mental health of American families.

Domestic violence is a public health issue. One group that helps victims of home violence is the National Network to End Domestic Violence. These crusaders are the leading voice for domestic violence victims and advocates. They are helping to expose violence, support survivors, and change the culture of our communities.

I commend them for their wonderful work. Of all the places on Earth where a person should be safe, it's at home.

And that's just the way it is.

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