What Do 22 Senators and a Taylor Swift
Parody Video Have in Common?
We did it! VAWA passed the House. Thank you so much for sharing the video and signing our petition. We passed a VAWA that includes all women. Now keep sharing this parody of Taylor Swift's "22" and tell the politicians who voted against it what we think about them!
2013 Violence Against Women Act
On Feb. 12, 2013, 22 senators, so-called public servants, decided to throw all women under the bus and vote against the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) – a reauthorization that extends protections to the LGBTQ community, Native American women and immigrant women.
Seriously? How can our public officials even pretend to have our best interests at heart when they routinely support positions that are not just counter-productive, but also harmful and dangerous?
We've thought about these Senators a lot. In fact, we made this catchy parody of Taylor Swift's "22" in their (dis)honor. Watch it and share with 22 of your friends.
Hey Congress! We're watching. And we vote.
Now the fight moves on to the House of Representatives. Sign Our Petition and tell the House to Pass VAWA for All Women.
VAWA Bill Right Now
On Feb. 12, 2013, the Senate passed the VAWA reauthorization, including the language extending protections to the LGBTQ community, Native American women and immigrant women, with bipartisan agreement and a huge margin - 78 to 22.
Women in these communities -- including Ms. Foundation grantees the Native American Community Board -- have been fighting for years to ensure that federal protections are extended to them. The Senate version of the bill addresses these concerns and does just that. It:
- Gives tribal courts the ability to prosecute abuse and sexual violence crimes;
- Makes programs specifically aimed at addressing LGBTQ victims of violence eligible for federal grants and funding and prohibits discrimination by other service providers;
- Does not provide for more U visas – visas given to victims of crime, including rape, trafficking, incest, domestic violence, sexual assault, etc. – but does support children listed under U visas and adds "stalking" to the list of crimes covered by the U visa.
Why Such Controversy?
Since 1994, Congress has reauthorized the Violence Against Women Act with bipartisan support and minimal fanfare. The year 2011, however, was different. Legislators hit a snag around extending protections to the LGBTQ community, Native American women and immigrant women.
Now that VAWA reauthorization has passed the Senate, it is again coming under attack. Minority legislators in the House are, even now, attempting to water down the language and remove essential protections.
Enough is enough. We cannot allow Congress to play politics with women's lives any longer. All women, no matter their status, their gender-identification or their tribal affiliation, should be safe from violence. We must urge the House to stand tall for women and pass the Senate-approved bill.
Sign the petition
I urge the U.S. House of Representatives to pass the bipartisan Senate version of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), because all women deserve to be protected from violence.