Press Release

April 26, 2012
Senator says law has been instrumental in reducing domestic abuse, violence against women

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) today praised Senate reauthorization of a long-standing law to stop violence against women and extend protections to other groups.  By a vote of 68-to-31, the Senate passed the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act, S. 1925, often referred to as VAWA.  The legislation now goes to the House of Representatives for consideration.

“I was an early co-sponsor of VAWA because it provides important legal, civil, economic and social safeguards for victims of domestic violence, particularly women,” said Senator Cardin.  “VAWA has not only transformed our criminal justice system, but it also has inspired many state and local governments to enact similar legislation, helping to ensure greater implementation of this law.”

S. 1925, was introduced in 2011 by U.S. Senators Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Mike Crapo (R-ID) to provide more resources to reduce domestic homicides and sexual assaults, strengthen housing protections for domestic violence victims and focus more attention on the high rates of violence among teens and young adults.

Since initial passage of VAWA in 1994, there has been a 51 percent increase in the reporting of domestic and sexual assaults on women. There has also been a 34 percent reduction in the number of women killed by a partner.  From 1994 to 2000, the VAWA saved American taxpayers more than $14 million.