Victim Advocates Celebrate Signing of VAWA

Today, President Obama signed the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act (VAWA) of 2013 into law. The highly anticipated signing secures needed protections and services for victims of domestic and sexual violence.

"This is an important and historic day as our national renews its commitment to supporting victims of domestic violence and to ending this epidemic in our country," said Patti Seger, executive director of the Wisconsin Coalition Against Domestic Violence (WCADV). “We thank President Obama for his support, and we especially thank Vice President Biden—the original author of VAWA—who has demonstrated a commitment to protecting victims throughout his career.”

Several key improvements are included in VAWA 2013. A landmark provision giving Tribal governments authority to protect Native victims from non-Native abusers will help address the vastly disproportionate level of violence that has historically been directed at Native women. Moreover, the bill will include enhanced protections for immigrant victims, better ensure lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender victims can access services, and add important housing protections for victims. The bill also preserves and maintains core funding for life-saving victim services.

"This law reaches all victims," said Seger. “Throughout the reauthorization process, advocates, survivors and supporters remained united in calling for a comprehensive bill that left no victim without increased opportunity for justice and support.”

Seger continued, "In Wisconsin, we are especially grateful for the leadership of Congresswoman Gwen Moore, who was instrumental in bringing this bill to the President’s desk. Survivors and advocates around the country recognize Congresswoman Moore’s efforts.

“We are also very thankful to Senator Tammy Baldwin. She played a leading role to ensure VAWA protects older adults who are abused. In addition, WCADV thanks the other members of the Wisconsin Congressional delegation who supported VAWA, Congressmen Kind, Pocan, Duffy and Ryan.”


Selected Resources

Voting Guide for Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Victim Advocates

This guide is meant to help advocates assist their clients with the voting process. With the passage of the Wisconsin photo ID voting law, there is a lot of confusion about who can vote and how they can vote.  The guide explains how survivors can register to vote and ensure they have the proper documentation to vote.   In this volatile political climate and budgetary climate, we need survivors’ voices and participation at the ballot box now more than ever.   

Hope. Vision. Future. A Plan for Providing Services to Domestic Violence Victims in Wisconsin

The Wisconsin Coalition Against Domestic Violence and the Governor’s Council on Domestic Abuse has created a long-range plan for serving Domestic Abuse victims. This document includes an overview of Wisconsin Domestic Abuse Programs, including statistics, services, populations served, and a financial picture. Recommendations address the issues of Economic Justice, Financial Self- Sufficiency, Housing, Legal assistance and Primary Prevention.

2011-2012 Legislative Agenda
WCADV and WCASA Milwaukee Sick Pay Brief

Domestic and sexual violence take a tremendous toll on public health and safety in Milwaukee. This brief, filed by WCADV and WCASA, supports the Milwaukee Paid Sick Days Ordinance which permits victims paid leave to obtain services from these organizations.

2013-2014 Legislative Agenda
Changes to Wisconsin Unemployment Insurance for DV Victims - Dec 2009

WCADV Policy Development Coordinator, Tony Gibart, offers the following summary of how Wisconsin unemployment statutes have changed in response to The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).

DCF Brochure about Domestic Violence and W-2

This brochure from the Department of Children and Families explains some of the resources and protections available to W-2 participants who are or were victims of domestic violence.  It is to be given to all W-2 applicants and participants. Hmong and Spanish versions are also available. 

Fact Sheets Related to Brookfield Shooting

These two fact sheets cover topics that were implicated by the shootings at a Brookfield, Wisconsin salon on Sunday, October 21, 2012.  They address (1) domestic violence and the workplace and (2) restraining orders and firearm surrender.