Washington, D.C. (July 26, 2018) — Today, Representative Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) introduced the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act (VAWA) (H.R. 6545). This legislation includes key enhancements to VAWA to help ensure critical protections and access to resources for all survivors. The 2018 VAWA reauthorization bill makes modest improvements, including increasing funding for rape prevention and education, strengthening public housing protections for survivors, improving health care and trauma-informed responses, addressing the needs of underserved communities, strengthening privacy protections, and more.
“The Violence Against Women Act is vital for survivors of sexual and domestic violence, and we urge Congress to reauthorize it without delay,” said YWCA USA CEO Alejandra Y. Castillo. “The proposed improvements will strengthen protections that currently exist in VAWA and help more survivors access the resources they need to be safe.”
“At YWCA, we know that not all violence is acknowledged or responded to equally, and that survivors who are in marginalized communities often face some of the highest barriers to accessing safety, support, and resources. The work to end gender-based violence and support survivors means we must keep improving how we address the realities faced by women and their families – and that is precisely what this bill does. We must center and lift up survivors who need protections the most, address our country’s pervasive and insidious culture of misogyny and gender-based violence, and close current loopholes that prevent survivors from getting the help they need and the justice they deserve.
“We stand with all survivors, advocates, and allies, and strongly support this bill that will help protect women and families across the country, including many that we serve. Without reauthorization, VAWA will expire on September 30. Survivors cannot wait. Congress must act now to protect survivors by passing this crucial, lifesaving legislation.”
About YWCA USA
YWCA USA is on a mission to eliminate racism, empower women, stand up for social justice, help families, and strengthen communities. We are one of the oldest and largest women’s organizations in the nation, serving over 2 million women, girls, and their families.
YWCA has been at the forefront of the most pressing social movements for 160 years — from voting rights to civil rights, from affordable housing to pay equity, from violence prevention to health care reform. Today, we combine programming and advocacy to generate institutional change in three key areas: racial justice and civil rights, empowerment and economic advancement of women and girls, and health and safety of women and girls. Learn more: www.ywca.org.