Today, Congresswoman Karen Bass (D-Calif.) released the following statement after House passage of the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act:
"After an unnecessary delay of more than 500 days, the House today finally did the right thing and passed commonsense legislation protecting battered women from their abusers. Protections were extended to those most in need of a helping hand, including battered women who are Native American, immigrants and LGBT. Because of VAWA, tribes have the authority to prosecute non-Indians who commit domestic violence against their Indian spouses or dating partners and that is a tremendous step forward in protecting Native American women from these senseless acts of violence.
"Reauthorizing VAWA says once and for all that violence against women is wrong and should not be tolerated in our society, regardless of immigration status, residence, or sexual orientation. Under VAWA, states will be given more funding to vigorously prosecute sexual and domestic violence offenders and can also qualify for money to provide key services to victims. The bill also reauthorizes the Trafficking Victims Protection Act, providing critical support for trafficking victims and helping to ensure traffickers are brought to justice.
"In Congress I will continue to push for additional legislation to strengthen our efforts to eliminate human trafficking but am proud to support the reauthorization of VAWA which places additional resources toward that goal."