U.S. Sen. Tom Udall issued the following statement after House passage of an improved Violence Against Women Act reauthorization today:
"By getting this bill across the finish line we are sending a very strong message that violence against women of any color or creed will not be tolerated. I'm especially pleased that when President Obama signs this historic legislation into law, the tribal provisions to protect Native women that I helped craft in the Indian Affairs Committee, and fought to maintain during Senate consideration, will become the law of the land. These important additions close jurisdictional loopholes to ensure justice is done in Indian Country by allowing tribes to combat domestic violence in their own communities and through their courts."
Native American women are two-and-a-half times more likely than other U.S. women to be victims of rape, and 1-in-3 will be sexually assaulted in their lifetimes. Click here for video of Udall advocating for the stronger protections for Native American women prior to Senate passage earlier this month.