House Reauthorizes Violence Against Women Act, Passes Johnson Amendment Strengthening Victims’ Housing Protections
WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. House of Representatives voted on Thursday to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act, with an amendment by Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson.
“In my home state of Texas and my city of Dallas, we are unfortunately deeply familiar with the tragedies involved in domestic violence,” said Congresswoman Johnson, who serves as Co-Chair of the Congressional Homelessness Caucus. “Families have been broken apart, and people have lost their lives to the scourge of domestic violence. We have the duty to do more to protect our communities.”
This bipartisan legislation makes great strides in addressing existing gaps in current law, which disproportionately affect victims of domestic violence and assault, including:
- Improving the services available for victims and survivors of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking;
- Expanding the housing protections and financial assistance available for victims and survivors;
- Improving protections for Native women, including by reaffirming tribal criminal jurisdiction over non-Indian perpetrators of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking;
- Expanding firearm laws to prohibit persons convicted of dating violence, misdemeanor stalking, or subject to protective orders from possessing firearms; and
- Investing in tools and resources for law enforcement and evidence-based prevention programs that make our communities safer.
Congresswoman Johnson’s amendment to the landmark bill will strengthen housing protections through emergency transfers for victims of domestic violence.
“My amendment will ensure that a tenant who is a victim of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking is able to apply for an emergency transfer to another available and safe dwelling unit assisted under a covered housing program,” said Congresswoman Johnson. “By voting in favor of this amendment, Congress is upholding our sacred obligation to protect the millions of victims and survivors who need and deserve our whole-hearted and full support.”