Yesterday, the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) passed out of committee and is now one step closer to reauthorization. Hadassah joined nearly 1,000 coalition members in submitting a letter to Congress in support of VAWA’s reauthorization, which the chairman referenced in his statement to the committee.
The Violence Against Women Act provides assistance to victims of domestic and dating violence, sexual assault and stalking—both women and men—by facilitating coordinated community responses to these crimes, funding specialized training for various levels of law enforcement, and supporting community-based organizations that offer programs for victims. Since its passage in 1994, more victims report domestic violence to the police and the rate of non-fatal intimate partner violence against women has decreased by 53 percent.
In January—following a campaign by grassroots advocates like you—the administration formally announced an updated definition of rape, which covers any person sexually assaulted (as classified by the updated Federal Bureau of Investigation Uniform Crime Report) without her or his consent. This change underscores the importance of this issue—and the power speaking out in a collective voice. But it is not enough!
Urge your legislators to co-sponsor the VAWA Reauthorization Act and work towards its swift passage. Click here to contact your elected officials directly through Hadassah’s National Action Center.