September 08, 2005

Crapo Hails Passage of VAWA Out of Committee

Violence Against Women Act headed for Senate floor

Washington, DC â?? Idaho Senator Mike Crapo lauded the actions of the Senate Judiciary Committee today as it passed the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) on to the full Senate for a vote later this fall. â??This landmark legislation, now eleven years in existence, funds critical programs to help all victims of violent crime as well as agencies and organizations who provide acute and legal aid to these victimsâ?? said Crapo. Crapo signed on to co-sponsor the reauthorization bill in March, noting the measure provides nearly $800 million over the five-year life of the bill for various assistance programs. He toured shelters in Idaho for women and children during the August recess last month. â??Shelters and services in Idaho are funded largely with federal dollars and this measure will assist in maintaining the level of service in our rural communities. VAWA provides life-saving services to many Idahoans and trains those who are on the front lines to best care for those who have suffered violence at the hands of another,â?? Crapo noted. â??Law enforcement, the courts, shelters and agencies can be encouraged by the reauthorization which will provide for another five years of federal funding for these important grant and assistance programs.â??VAWA was passed in 1994 to more specifically address the needs of women who are victims of crime. It has since been expanded to become gender neutral and funds programs that help law enforcement agencies, the judicial system, local and state agencies and non-profits appropriately assist victims of crime. The current reauthorization includes Crapoâ??s provisions to make victims of dating violence eligible for assistance and a new section which addresses the needs of Indian women who as a population group suffer the highest rates of violence against women in the nation. VAWA now goes to the full Senate for a vote later in the year. A related measure to maintain funding in the Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) is also pending. To directly link to this news release, please use the following address: http://crapo.senate.gov/media/newsreleases/release_full.cfm?id=245399