Kildee Urges Senate to Not Weaken Violence Against Women Act

April 23, 2012

Kildee Urges Senate to Not Weaken Violence Against Women Act

Says VAWA should be strengthened not weakened

(Flint) – Dan Kildee is urging voters to sign an online petition that would  demand that U.S. Senate Leaders Harry Reid and Mitch McConnell not allow any amendments be attached to the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) that would weaken the act.  Kildee’s petition can be found at The Senate is expected to vote on reauthorization of VAWA this week.  Kildee is the Democratic candidate for Michigan’s 5th Congressional District.  The 5th Congressional District encompasses all of Genesee, Bay, Iosco and Arenac Counties, part of Saginaw County – including the city of Saginaw – and part of Tuscola County.

“Since the original passage of VAWA in 1994 countless lives have been saved and the ability for law enforcement and social service groups to deal with these terrible crimes has improved.  However, we still have not eliminated domestic violence and tens of thousands of women across Michigan are still victims,” said Kildee.  “The fact that some Republicans in the Senate are playing political games with this legislation and are trying to weaken it especially when it relates to Native Americans is unconscionable.”

Kildee continued, “1 in 3 Native American women will be victims of rape.  It’s very disturbing.  To make matters worse they also have to live with the fact that according to a recent GAO study, U.S. Attorneys declined to prosecute 50% of the cases referred to them when the victim was Native American and the assailant was not Native American.  It is simply intolerable for this to exist in our society.  We need to ensure that the Federal Government bring the resources and replace the current patchwork of civil rights language with clear language so that victims of domestic violence aren’t also victims of discrimination.”

“I look forward to the Senate quickly reauthorizing and strengthening VAWA. We have made much progress in the fight against domestic violence, but the crisis hasn’t gone away.  Now is the time to act. Please sign on to this important petition before this week’s crucial vote.”