Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) Reauthorization

Not all homes provide a safe haven. For the victims of domestic violence, home is a place where hearts and lives are broken. Family violence spares no one. The partner who is battered and the children who watch, or who themselves may be abused, all suffer. Their physical and emotional pain is long-lasting.

Domestic violence continues to pose a clear and present danger to the health and well-being of women. For far too many women violence and danger are their constant companions. Yet, domestic violence is a subject that we, as a society, are reluctant to talk about. As a result, victims often suffer and die in silence. And despite the intense media attention recently focused on a few high profile courtroom cases, the public remains largely uninformed about the nature and warning signs of domestic violence.

Until recently, domestic violence was viewed as a “private family matter” as opposed to a crime against society with potentially lethal consequences.  Increasingly our public institutions—law enforcement, the courts, policy makers, health care providers, and social service providers—are recognizing incidents of domestic violence as violent criminal acts with devastating consequences for individual victims, their children, and the community, and are seeking effective methods for dealing with this pressing public health issue.  Community support and involvement are integral parts of domestic violence prevention and intervention. The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) has provided funding for much needed supportive programs for victims of domestic violence.

The National Task to End Sexual and Domestic Violence Against Women in its recent action alert reminds us that the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) is due for reauthorization. In 2011, it was reported that Senators Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Mike Crapo (R-ID), introduced a bipartisan bill to reauthorize and improve VAWA.  In its action alert, the National Task Force indicates that it has worked closely with them on “…the bill to ensure that it will not only continue proven effective programs, but that it will make key changes to streamline VAWA and make sure that even more people have access to safety, stability and justice.”

The National Task to End Sexual and Domestic Violence Against Women reminds us that it is important to ensure that the Senators on the list below support the bill.  With that said, if you live in any of the states listed below, please call your Senator(s) TODAY and ask for them to support VAWA reauthorization.  It is critical to VAWA’s reauthorization to get and keep our elected officials telephones ringing.

To assist you in placing your call, the National Task to End Sexual and Domestic Violence Against Women’s action alert provides the following talking points and contact information for your elected officials in Washington, DC.

“Talking points:

We know that Senator _________ cares about ending domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking.

The Violence Against Women Act is critical to our ability to address these crimes in our state.

There is evidence showing that VAWA has saved millions of dollars and countless lives.

We are asking for you to be an original co-sponsor of the Leahy/Crapo bill that will be introduced on Wednesday.

Please contact Anya McMurray or Noah Bookbinder at (202)224-7703 to sign on to the bill.”

Alabama

Sessions, Jeff – (202) 224-4124

Shelby, Richard – (202) 224-5744

Arkansas

Boozman, John – (202) 224-4843

Alaska

Murkowski, Lisa – (202) 224-6665

Arizona

McCain, John – (202) 224-2235

Kyl, Jon – (202) 224-4521

Florida

Rubio, Marco – (202) 224-3041

Georgia

Chambliss, Saxby – (202) 224-3521

Isakson, Johnny – (202) 224-3643

Idaho

Crapo, Mike – (202) 224-6142 – (thank him!)

Risch, James – (202) 224-2752

Illinois

Kirk, Mark – (202) 224-2854

Indiana

Lugar, Richard – (202) 224-4814

Coats, Daniel – (202) 224-5623

Iowa

Grassley, Chuck – (202) 224-3744

Louisiana

Vitter, David – (202) 224-4623

Kansas

Moran, Jerry – (202) 224-6521

Roberts, Pat – (202) 224-4774

Kentucky

McConnell, Mitch – (202) 224-2541

Paul, Rand – (202) 224-4343

Maine

Collins, Susan – (202) 224-2523

Snowe, Olympia – (202) 224-5344

Massachusetts

Brown, Scott – (202) 224-4543

Mississippi

Cochran, Thad – (202) 224-5054

Wicker, Roger – (202) 224-6253

Missouri

Blunt, Roy – (202) 224-5721

Nebraska

Johanns, Mike – (202) 224-4224

Nevada

Heller, Dean – (202) 224-6244

New Hampshire

Ayotte, Kelly – (202) 224-3324

North Carolina

Burr, Richard – (202) 224-3154

North Dakota

Hoeven, John – (202) 224-2551

Ohio

Portman, Rob – (202) 224-3353

Oklahoma

Coburn, Tom – (202) 224-5754

Inhofe, James – (202) 224-4721

Pennsylvania

Toomey, Patrick – (202) 224-4254

South Carolina

DeMint, Jim – (202) 224-6121

Graham, Lindsey – (202) 224-5972

South Dakota

Thune, John – (202) 224-2321

Tennessee

Alexander, Lamar – (202) 224-4944

Corker, Bob – (202) 224-3344

Texas

Cornyn, John – (202) 224-2934

Hutchison, Kay Bailey – (202) 224-5922

Utah

Hatch, Orrin – (202) 224-5251

Lee, Mike – (202) 224-5444

Wisconsin

Johnson, Ron – (202) 224-5323

Wyoming

Enzi, Michael – (202) 224-3424

Barrasso, John – (202) 224-6441

Please join me in contacting our elected officials to remind them of the importance of reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). With an equal amount of conscience, mind, heart, and collective action, we can eradicate domestic violence.

Source(s): National Task to End Sexual and Domestic Violence Against Women

Photo Credit: Microsoft Clip Art

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