VAWA Passage is a Victory for Women and Girls Worldwide

Today’s passage of the Violence Against Women Act (S. 47) is a victory for women and girls both here in the United States and those living abroad. After being stalled in Congress for over a year, the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) was reauthorized today, with the House of Representatives passing the same bill the Senate passed earlier this month.

Not only does VAWA protect women and girls in the United States from violence, but it also ensures that the U.S. is doing its part to protect girls from being forced into early marriages. Ending early and forced marriage is vital to the goal of ensuring that girls around the world are able to lead healthy, empowered, educated, and safe lives. As Senator Durbin, a champion on this issue, stated just after the vote, the bill’s “new mandate for a multisectoral strategy to end child marriage is an important step forward and now we must focus our efforts on ensuring it is developed without delay and its implementation is fully funded.”

The passage of this bill is a testament to how various communities that care about the health and safety of women and girls can come together to fight for what is necessary and what is right. It is also a testament to the hard work of steadfast leaders in the United States Congress on this issue, such as Senator Durbin (D-IL), Congresswoman McCollum (D-MN), Congressman Aaron Schock (R-IL), and former Senator Olympia Snowe (R-ME). We congratulate them on this accomplishment and thank them for their service to women and girls around the world.

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