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November 14, 2012

As Congress returns to Washington, DC and begins the work of completing their legislative session, NNEDV urges lawmakers to swiftly reauthorize a strong, bipartisan Violence Against Women Act (VAWA).

"We saw the power of women's voices and votes in the election last week – and women want the Violence Against Women Act," said Kim Gandy, President of NNEDV. "We urge Congress to end the stalemate and send the President a strong bi-partisan VAWA that safely and effectively protects all victims."

VAWA is the cornerstone of our nation's response to domestic and sexual violence. Despite its vital role in preventing and ending violence, VAWA expired 679 days ago and it has been 183 days since Congress took any action on the bill. Today, NNEDV and its nationwide network of domestic violence coalitions and local domestic violence programs are joining in a national day of action to urge Congress to reauthorize VAWA in the lame duck session of the 112th Congress.

"VAWA saves women's lives, and we know that women and their advocates across the country care deeply about this issue," Gandy said. "Today, we are coming together to urge Congress to move forward on VAWA and pass a reauthorization bill that responds to the continued need for services, intervention and prevention, for all victims."

The final bill should build on current law and include key improvements to meet the needs of all victims. VAWA housing protections should be strengthened to provide emergency housing transfer options for survivors. The law must also expand protections for LGBT and Native American victims. It must improve and preserve access to justice for immigrant victims of domestic violence. Finally, VAWA must remove barriers and commit sufficient resources to support the lifesaving work of local programs that serve victims.

"VAWA's improvements have bipartisan support in the Senate. We are asking the House to concur in these modest, but much needed changes that can mean the difference between life and death," concluded Gandy.

Take Action

Contact your Members of Congress today and urge them pass VAWA now!

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