Students Speak out against Domestic Violence on Capitol Hill

Students Speak out against Domestic Violence on Capitol Hill

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Andrea Barron
March 01, 2013

This semester, 23 students in the Domestic Violence Civic Engagement Project are visiting Capitol Hill to support renewal of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), which has been instrumental in dramatically reducing domestic violence since it was passed by Congress in 1994.


The legislation trains police, judges, and other law enforcement officials to handle domestic violence cases. It also creates a national hotline for domestic violence victims, prevents abusers from using a victim’s past sexual history against her during a rape trial and has made stalking a crime. The 2013 VAWA bill also provides more protection to Native American women, abused immigrants, the LGBT community and college students.


TWC students were briefed for their Capitol Hill visits by the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV), a national advocacy group established specifically to pass VAWA in 1994. The group included 15 U.S. students and international students from Mexico, Canada, Korea and Taiwan.


The following students researched New Jersey Congressman, Howard Coble, and his position on VAWA before meeting with his Legislative Director to discuss the renewal of the act:


After the meeting ended, Gambill, a young woman in a wheelchair, felt empathy towards immigrants and other minorities protected by VAWA: “I know what it feels like not to have control over your own body and not having a lot of help offered,” she said. “This is why I am standing up to say that the Violence Against Women Act needs to help everyone.”


[View photos of the event on our Flickr channel]

[Read more about TWC's work with NNEDV]

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