Earlier this week those of us in the field of Domestic Violence remembered the great victory in the protection of women’s civil rights: The “Violence Against Women Act” (VAWA) was signed into law twenty five years ago and with its passing helped to establish dedicated funding for programs that assist victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. Some of the programs at 180 Turning Lives Around benefited from the passage of VAWA and receiving those early federal grants helped to bolster our existing programs while also allowing us to implement new services that have helped us reach even more victims in Monmouth County. Without the funding we’ve received from VAWA for over the last two decades, our strategies to empower survivors to have the strength and courage to turn their life around would have been very limited. VAWA provides much needed resources and has enabled our services to better meet the needs of survivors in our community.
The VAWA bill is up for reauthorization this year (it has been reauthorized by Congress three times since 1994) but this year the bill has stalled in the Senate. We at 180 Turning Lives Around along with many other victim-support organizations including, The National Network To End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) and the New Jersey Coalition to End Domestic Violence (NJCEDV) believe the reauthorization of this bill is urgent and to delay its passage is unacceptable and could endanger the lives of the most at-risk communities. I urge you to learn more about this topic and to contact your Senators to reauthorize VAWA. Please follow the link here: https://nnedv.org/latest_update/urging-congressional-action-25th-anniversary-violence-women-act-vawa/