Editorial: Set aside politics for Violence Against Women Act

"Prevention of domestic violence isn’t just a women’s issue.

Women are most often the victims and men are most often the perpetrators. However, men can be victims and women can be offenders. Domestic violence harms children who are targeted and those who witness the violence to other family members. Violence destroys families and weakens communities.

To keep victims safer and to reduce domestic violence, the Senate and House should pass the VAWA reauthorization this year.

Republicans charge that Democrats are pushing the VAWA to make the GOP look bad for voting against it. The obvious solution to that image worry is for lawmakers of both parties to support the law.

The controversial new provisions of the act include:

Narrowing a jurisdictional gap that allows non-tribal members to escape prosecution for domestic violence on Indian reservations. In Montana, the incidence of domestic violence is higher in reservation communities. Nationally, Native American women are more likely to be the victims of violence than any other demographic group. Often, the perpetrator is a non-Indian male."

Get the Story:
Gazette opinion: Lawmakers must unite against domestic violence (The Billings Gazette 3/22)

Related Stories:
Blog: Senate Republicans fight Violence Against Women Act (3/21)
Democrats push for action on Violence Against Women Act (3/15)
Opinion: Violence Against Women Act helps Indian women (3/15)
Turtle Talk: Republicans fighting Indian provisions in VAWA (3/12)
Rep. Betty McCollum co-sponsors SAVE Native Women Act (3/8)
Sen. Hatch opposes bill provisions to protect Native women (3/7)

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