Urgent: House vote tomorrow to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)

The following if from the Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL) today, April 3, 2019

We need your help! The House will vote tomorrow (4/4/2019) to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act (H.R. 1585) or VAWA. Not only does this bill secure vital funding for victim services, it also expands tribal jurisdiction to prosecute non-Native American perpetrators of violence.

The 115th Congress let VAWA expire for the first time in 25 years. Its reauthorization in 2013 was a huge win, giving tribal courts jurisdiction over non-Native Americans in domestic violence cases.

Violence against Native American women on tribal lands, which is overwhelming committed by non-Native perpetrators, has reached devastating levels. The newly introduced bill, H.R. 1585, addresses this by expanding tribal jurisdiction to include crimes of sexual assault, stalking, child abuse, and sex trafficking. Provisions from Savanna’s Act, which did not pass the last Congress, are also included in this bill to address the crisis of missing and murdered Indigenous women.

Lacina Tangnaqudo Onco, (Shinnecock/Kiowa), Congressional Advocate Native American Policy Program, FCNL

Use this link to sent a letter to your members of Congress https://fcnl.actionkit.com/mailings/view/9586

The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), which expired earlier this year, has been reintroduced in the House with expanded protections for Native women, who face disproportionately high rates of violence.
FCNL advocates have worked hard to secure the inclusion of Savanna’s Act and expanded jurisdiction for tribal law enforcement to investigate non-Indian perpetrators sexual assault, stalking, sex trafficking, and child abuse on Native lands. It also does not protect children who are often victims of domestic violence and abuse.
Tribes need the jurisdictional authority to protect their people from all forms of violence, and adequate resources to effectively respond to missing cases. Urge your Representative to support the tribal provisions in H.R. 1585.

Native American women face disproportionately high rates of violence. Most of these violent acts involve non-Indians. Prior to the reauthorization of VAWA in 2013, tribal courts did not have jurisdiction over non-Indians. The Special Domestic Violence Criminal Jurisdiction returned this jurisdiction, but it offers limited protections.

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