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The road to renewing VAWA in 7 steps (call your reps)

Finally, the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) has been introduced for reauthorization in the House on Thursday, July 26th by Sheila Jackson Lee (D) of Texas’s 18th district. Here’s a breakdown of everything you need to know:
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1) There are very, very minimal changes to VAWA this time around, due to the political climate it’s being introduced in. That said,
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2) VAWA is critical to the safety and well being of women and girls around the country. No other piece of legislation comes close to providing and allocating the amount of money that VAWA does. Without VAWA, millions of women and girls will be vulnerable. But.
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3) VAWA protects men and boys too. It should be seen more as an anti-violence act.
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4) Historically, VAWA has been completely bipartisan. Protecting vulnerable women and girls should be apolitical. But in spite of this previous bipartisan support,
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5) There are only 104 cosponsors as of writing this, and all of them are Democrats. The struggle won’t be to get cosponsors, it will be to get Republican cosponsors. Call your Representatives. Remind them they have a duty to protect their female constituents.
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6) The current VAWA expires on September 30th, less than two months from today. Call your representatives.
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7) VAWA is integral in centering marginalized identities in the fight to end domestic violence and violence against women. It’s certainly not perfect, but it’s one of the few pieces of legislation that actively seeks to protect the most vulnerable women in the country, including trans folks, native women, women of color, women with disabilities, LGBT women, and many more.
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So what can you do?
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Again, call your reps. Seriously. Do it right now, I can wait.
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Done?
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Good. You can also tweet at them. JWI has created a TON of tweets and all you have to do is copy and paste them and fill in your rep’s handle. The tweets are below. And to spice things up, add one of the graphics that JWI created too! They’re also below. Tweets with visuals are 150x more likely to get retweets.
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Additionally, you can attend JWI’s webinar next week about engaging the grassroots on getting VAWA renewed. Check it out here.
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Hashtags: #VAWA4ALL and #VAWA18.
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Sample tweets (don’t forget to replace @rephandle with your rep’s actual handle):
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TY @JacksonLeeTX18 for being a champion for victims and survivors of domestic and sexual violence. We welcome the introduction of the ‘Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act of 2018’ for a #VAWA4ALL #VAWA18

The Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act of 2018, introduced by @JacksonLeeTX18 today, includes key enhancements for all survivors of domestic and sexual violence. @HouseDemocrats and @HouseGOP, let’s get this bill across the finish line! #VAWA18 #VAWA4ALL

The Violence Against Women Act has always been bipartisan. @Rephandle can we count on you to co-sponsor @JacksonLeeTX18 ‘Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act of 2018’ for a #VAWA4All survivors? #VAWA18

We’re with @JacksonLeeTX18 to pass #VAWA4ALL because communities need access to sexual assault prevention! @RepHandle, please co-sponsor #VAWA18

We’re with @JacksonLeeTX18 to pass #VAWA4ALL because survivors need housing protections! @RepHandle, please co-sponsor the ‘Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act of 2018’

We’re with @JacksonLeeTX18 to pass #VAWA4ALL because native survivors deserve justice! Please co-sponsor @RepHandle

@RepHandle, violence against women happens in our community, too. Reauthorize #VAWA and support prevention and education programs that keep our jurisdiction safe!

Violence doesn’t discriminate and neither should our laws! Support #VAWA18 and ensure Native survivors of gender-based violence have access to justice on tribal lands! #VAWA4ALL

Violence doesn’t discriminate and neither should our laws! Support #VAWA18 and ensure incarcerated survivors of gender-based violence have access to trauma-informed care! #VAWA4ALL

Support #VAWA18 and ensure survivors of domestic abuse access to safe housing! #VAWA4ALL

Reducing access to firearms saves women’s lives! Support #VAWA18 and help prevent firearm-involved intimate partner homicides #VAWA4ALL

 

 

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