VAWA was initially passed under the Clinton Administration in 1994. It protects women from domestic and sexual abuse and gives them the right to pursue legal recourse against their abusers. The law also protects abused men as well. Since its passage, the Act has been reauthorized by Congress three times and each time Republicans have challenged several of its provisions. The latest debate stems from whether the protections granted by the Act should extend to gays, illegal aliens and Native Americans.
Here is a run down of the expected damage:
- About 112,000 domestic abuse victims will not have access to shelters or programs.
- Nearly 64,000 victims will be denied access to legal and housing services, as well as sexual assault services, counseling, and protective orders.
- New programs that were expected to be funded will be compromised.
- Programs that targeted children of domestic abuse victims will be cut as well.