NIWRC Commends House Passage of Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(LAME DEER, Mont., October 26, 2021)—Today, the United States House of Representatives voted 228 to 200 to pass the bipartisan Family Violence Prevention and Services Improvement Act (FVPSA) of 2021 (H.R. 2119). The bill, which was introduced on March 23, 2021 by Representatives Lucy McBath (D-GA-06), Gwen Moore (D-WI-04), Don Young (R-AK-At Large), and John Katko (R-NY-24), would provide critical funding for shelter and supportive services for victims of domestic violence, including those in Indian Country.
H.R. 2119 would expand grant programs and make many needed improvements to provide survivors with better access to support and safety by increasing overall authorizations, increasing the Tribal set-aside from 10% to 12.5%, providing authorizing recognition and meaningful funding for Tribal coalitions, authorizing recognition and permanent funding for the currently funded Alaska Native Women’s Resource Center, authorizing recognition and permanent funding for the currently funded StrongHearts Native Helpline to serve as the national Indian domestic violence hotline, and establishing a Native Hawaiian Resource Center on Domestic Violence.
“The devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the urgent need for advocacy services for Native victims. H.R. 2119 is an important step forward in supporting the vital work of shelters and service providers and ensuring that communities and survivors who are disproportionately impacted by domestic violence have increased access to such services,” said Lucy Rain Simpson, NIWRC Executive Director and a citizen of the Navajo Nation. “The National Indigenous Women’s Resource Center (NIWRC) applauds Representatives McBath, Moore, Young, and Katko for their leadership, and the House of Representatives for voting to reauthorize and enhance FVPSA.”
“A Native Hawaiian Resource Center on Domestic Violence addresses the unmet needs of Native Hawaiian victims of domestic violence by recognizing the importance of local problem solving by and for Kanaka Maoli (Native Hawaiians),” said Rosemond Pettigrew, Board President, Pouhana O Na Wahine (Pillars of Women).
“Our coalition has long advocated for the enhancements in H.R. 2119, including those that recognize the essential role of Tribal domestic violence coalitions, StrongHearts Native Helpline, and the Alaska Native Women’s Resource Center, in addressing violence against Indigenous women and families,” said Cherrah Giles, NIWRC Board Chairwoman and a citizen of the Muscogee Nation. “We call on the Senate to move swiftly to make expansion and reauthorization of FVPSA a priority in the 117th Congress.”
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