UPDATE (10/1): Congress failed to pass a reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) before the September 30th deadline, instead approving stopgap funding to sustain VAWA through December 7th. Congress must commit to a robust reauthorization of VAWA.
The Violence Against Women Act, landmark legislation first passed with bipartisan support in 1994, is set to expire on September 30th unless lawmakers pass a reauthorization bill. The act established the Department of Justice’s Office on Violence Against Women and provides funding for the investigation and prosecution of domestic and other interpersonal violence, stalking, and sexual assault.
In July, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) introduced a reauthorization bill that would not only reauthorize funding for VAWA's existing programs but also establish new policies to help abuse victims remain in stable housing, expand red-flag laws to block people convicted of dating abuse or stalking from accessing guns, and broaden protections against abuse for Native American women.
While VAWA reauthorization has historically enjoyed bipartisan support, not a single Republican has co-sponsored the current reauthorization bill. Urge your representatives to stand up for women and reauthorize VAWA.
One call to make: Representative Richmond or Scalise
Because of how Congressional districts are drawn, New Orleans residents have either Richmond or Scalise as their representative. If you don't know who your representative is, you can look it up by entering your home address on the U.S. House of Representatives website.
Representative Cedric Richmond - in DC at (202) 225-6636, and in New Orleans at (504) 288-3777
Representative Steve Scalise - in DC at (202) 225-3015, and in Metairie at (504) 837-1259
Hi, my name is [Your Name] and I'm an active voter from New Orleans, ZIP Code 70118 [Or wherever you’re from].
I’m calling in support of H.R.6545, the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2018. Congress must act swiftly to pass this critical legislation to preserve funding for crucial programs protecting people from domestic violence, sexual assault, and dating violence.
Thank you for all your hard work answering phones.
This call is adapted from 5Calls.org, which can be viewed here.