The Fate of the Real VAWA is Uncertain. Please, Take Action!

The real version of VAWA will be brought to the Senate floor as early as tomorrow.  There will be an attempt to amend the bill in ways that will harm victims and create more bureaucracy.

The amendments would:

  • Restrict protections for immigrant victims
  • Eliminate protections for LGBT survivors 
  • Add audit requirements that are excessive, burdensome and costly
  • Deny tribal victims justice
  • Impose mandatory minimum sentences, which discourage victim reporting and make the criminal justice process more burdensome and traumatic because more cases go to trial or are plead to less significant charges.

S. 1925 was carefully crafted with new provisions and refinements based on interviews with more than 2,000 law enforcement, court, prosecution, legal services, and victim services professionals from across the country. Their message was clear: “We can’t afford to turn anyone away.  Please give us the resources and tools to make sure that we can serve any victim who comes to our doors.”

The Grassley-Hutchinson language was drafted without input or consultation from the thousands of professionals engaged in this work every day. Their language includes damaging and unworkable provisions that will harm victims, cost money, and create new bureaucracies and unnecessary inefficiencies that would divert precious dollars from services.  

ACTION: Please call Senator Kohl and ask him to oppose any amendments to s. 1925 at (202) 224-5653.

Talking Points:

  • Thank you for your continued support of the Violence Against Women Act. You are helping to create and preserve life-saving services for thousands of victims in Wisconsin. 
  • Please vigorously oppose the Grassley/Hutchison amendment and any other effort to remove or dilute the victim protections in the original bill. 
  • The Grassley/Hutchison amendment harms victims, costs money, creates new bureaucracies and inefficiencies that would divert precious funding.
  • Mandatory minimums are nearly universally opposed by law enforcement and victim advocates because they keep victims who were assaulted by someone they know from reporting or result in criminals pleading to lower crimes. 

Thank you for all of your time and important work.