This afternoon Congressman John B. Larson (CT-01) joined with colleagues in the House of Representatives to introduce the 2012 Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) reauthorization bill.
Larson, who is a co-sponsor of the 2012 legislation and has been a staunch supporter of continued reauthorization and sustained funding since he entered Congress in 1999, called on the House to act immediately to pass this important legislation.
"In Connecticut we are very lucky to have such terrific leadership at the state level that is committed to combating domestic violence," Congressman Larson said. "However, for millions across the country in the absence of local leadership VAWA is absolutely critical in providing funding and resources needed to help the current victims and prevent future instances of domestic violence. This is not a Democratic issue or a Republican one, but an effort that all lawmakers must get behind."
Enacted in 1994 to improve the way our country responds to domestic violence and sexual assault, VAWA established new federal crimes of interstate domestic violence and stalking, doubled penalties for repeat sex offenders, and sparked the passage of laws at the state level to protect victims. The bill also funds grant programs to help the victims of domestic abuse and sexual violence. Since the passage of the Violence Against Women Act in 1994, rates of domestic violence have decreased by over 50 percent.
Last September Congressman Larson joined with then-interim Executive Director of the Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic Violence (CCADV), Karen Jarmoc, to host a roundtable discussion on preventing domestic violence in Connecticut. Additionally, last year Congressman Larson was honored as a member of the "First 100," an award presented by the CCADV to the first 100 men who showed a commitment to ending domestic violence in Connecticut.