Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) today released the following statement regarding the introduction of the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013. Braley introduced the reauthorization along with Representative Gwen Moore of Wisconsin.
"The Violence Against Women Act protects those who are victimized and require critically needed services. This bill will work to combat violence, assault, and stalking, as well as assist families and increase funds for law enforcement and victims' assistance groups. I hope we are able to move fast and pass this bill quickly as the need is great for these services in communities across the nation."
The Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (VAWA Reauthorization) significantly strengthens the ability of the Federal Government, the States, law enforcement, and service providers to combat domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking. As with the previous reauthorization of VAWA in 2000 and 2005, this bill responds to the realities and needs reported by those who work with victims every day to make VAWA work better for all victims.
VAWA-funded programs have dramatically improved the national response to violence by improving the criminal justice system's ability to keep victims safe, and has provided victims with critical services such as transitional housing, legal assistance, and supervised visitation services.
The reauthorization will incorporate new approaches to more effectively combat violence. There will be a new focus on sexual assault, homicide reductions, violence against Native Women, and improving protections for immigrant survivors. The VAWA reauthorization will also take new steps to reach all victims of sexual assault, dating violence, and stalking who need help by expanding housing protections, services for underserved communities, and civil rights protections.
In April 2011, Braley introduced the Holley Lynn James Act to strengthen the legal process for preventing and addressing claims of sexual assault and domestic violence in the military. He continues to fight for enhanced protection services for women.