Monday, July 18, 2005

U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee to Hold Hearing on Reauthorization of Violence Against Women Act

Washington, DC - The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing tomorrow on the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). Authorization for this legislation has expired, putting at risk thousands of programs that provide direct services to victims. A panel of advocates, government officials, and celebrities will address the committee to urge reauthorization.

Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing on VAWA Reauthorization
Tuesday, July 19, 2005, 11:00 a.m.
Mary Lou Leary, Executive Director, National Center for Victims of Crime; Salma Hayek, activist and film actor; M. L. Carr, former coach and NBA champion; Diane Stuart, Director of the Office on Violence Against Women, U.S. Department of Justice; and Lynn Rosenthal, Executive Director of the National Network to End Domestic Violence are scheduled to speak.

VAWA, first enacted in 1994, revolutionized the nation's response to victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, stalking, dating violence, and trafficking. Under VAWA, crucial services--including emergency shelters, sexual assault nurse examiner programs, child advocacy centers, and hotlines--have become a lifeline for tens of thousands of victims across the country.

The National Center for Victims of Crime played a key role in shaping the Sexual Assault Services Act (SASA), an important addition to VAWA that would establish a critically needed funding stream for direct services for sexual assault victims, providing relief for constant funding shortages, long waiting lists for victim counseling, closed satellite offices, and significantly reduced services.

For National Center testimony and more information about the Violence Against Women Act of 2005, visit