House-passed Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization Includes Bipartisan Omar Amendment
March 17, 2021
WASHINGTON—Today, the House passed a historic reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, including three amendments authored by Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), including a bipartisan amendment with Rep. Rodney Davis (R-IL).
“This is much-needed legislation,” Rep. Omar said. “One in three women still experience domestic violence, and the coronavirus crisis has forced many women to quarantine in unsafe domestic situations. This bill makes investments on domestic violence prevention, improves access to housing for survivors, and works to better protect Native women and women of color. I am especially proud that it includes three of my amendments to better track the economic consequences of domestic violence.
“Two years ago, Republicans in the Senate and White House shamefully blocked a historic and bipartisan VAWA reauthorization. Now, with a Democratic Majority in the Senate and President Biden in the White House, we must pass an updated version of this legislation, so that it can become law.”
The legislation authorizes the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to track and report on the economic consequences of domestic violence. The first amendment will require the inclusion of credit history in this report. The second will require analysis of legal costs, filing fees, and complexities of law enforcement jurisdiction. The third amendment, cosponsored with Rep. Rodney Davis, will require the Department of Health and Human Services to include the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on survivors of domestic violence as it relates to their ability to maintain economic security.
Among other provisions, the bill:
- Makes vital new investments in prevention
- Improves services for victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking
- Includes provisions to improve the criminal justice response to gender-based violence, in order tomake our communities safer
- Works to better protect Native American women
- Improves access to housing for survivors and victims
- Supports survivors who need assistance rebuilding financially
- Improves the health care system’s response to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking
- Supports communities of color
- Improves conditions for women in federal custody
- Protects the office on violence against women
- Protects victims of dating violence from firearm homicide by closing some loopholes in current firearms laws in order to help prevent intimate partner and stalking homicides
All three amendments passed en bloc.
You can find the text of all three amendments here.
You can find a fact sheet on the legislation here.