A GIF Guide to the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)

In 1993, U.S. Senator Joseph Biden and the majority staff of the Senate Judiciary Committee conclude a three‐year investigation into the causes and effects of violence against women. In his introduction to the report, Senator Biden states, “Through this process, I have become convinced that violence against women reflects as much a failure of our nation’s collective moral imagination as it does the failure of our nation’s laws and  regulations. We are helpless to change the course of this violence unless, and until, we achieve a national consensus that it deserves our profound public outrage.”

President Clinton signs the Violence Against Women Act into law on September 13, 1994. The Act strengthens laws against sexual assault, domestic violence, and stalking and provides much-needed funding for prevention, prosecution, and victim services efforts. The Act also established the Office on Violence Against Women within the Department of Justice.

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