AVON — Selectman John Calloway has apologized for a mistake he made at the town meeting March 15.

Each year, nonprofit groups ask voters for financial support. At the town meeting, Avon residents decided against supporting groups that receive Franklin County funding. Calloway, also a member of the county Budget Committee, said voters should not approve the $200 request because Safe Voices received support at the county level.

Jane Morrison, executive director of Safe Voices, said she was dismayed when she read Calloway’s remarks.

“We never have asked Franklin County for money, so I was very concerned that Avon voters would think we were trying to skirt the rules,” she said.

She contacted the Avon Town Office, and Calloway returned her call. He apologized for the error, she said.

“I said that Safe Voices was ‘double dipping.’ I was wrong,” Calloway said. “They do not request funds from the county, and I apologize to Safe Voices and to the voters of Avon for the misstatement.”

Calloway said he decided the right thing to do was to mail a personal check for the requested amount of $200 to Morrison.

“I needed to make amends,” he said.

The organization, formerly known as Abused Women’s Advocacy Project, provides emergency and support services to domestic violence victims, as well as education in the community and in school systems.

“We have a small staff, and I wish we had someone at the meeting to address Mr. Calloway’s concerns,” she said. “We try to cover all of the town meetings, but with a small staff, we need them to be responding to the needs of our clients.”

Safe Voices, she said, has been providing domestic violence services for over 37 years with emergency shelter, children’s services, individual and court advocacy and many hours of community education. Morrison said in 2013 that the organization provided services to nearly 2,000 victims, and 246 of those came from Franklin County.


Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.