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'No One Should Have to Live in Fear of Violence'

3/8/2013, 1:44 p.m.

This Act will help by requiring colleges and universities to provide information to students about dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking and improve data collection about these crimes. We call on all of our colleges and universities to make ending sexual assault a top priority.

In addition, the bill removes barriers faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) victims, whose needs are often overlooked by law enforcement, prosecutors, courts, and victim service providers.

We are also thrilled that Congress held the line and maintained protections for battered immigrants and took the important step of also reauthorizing the Trafficking Victims Protection Act in this same legislation.

Finally and very importantly, VAWA will bring justice for Native American victims. Rates of domestic violence perpetrated on Native American women are among the highest in the country. VAWA will help to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of the tribal justice system and bring perpetrators of violence to justice.

No one should have to live in fear of violence, especially in her home, and VAWA affirms that belief. Today's signing ensures that victims and survivors can continue to be provided the vital resources they deserve. Our country is better off for it.

(Editor's Note: This article was first published on the Huffington Post)