Speaker Nancy Pelosi

U.S. House of Representatives

Pelosi Statement on 25th Anniversary of Violence Against Women Act

September 13, 2019
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued the following statement to mark the 25th anniversary of the enactment of the landmark Violence Against Women Act, which President Bill Clinton signed into law on September 13, 1994:

“For a quarter century, the Violence Against Women Act has stood as a landmark achievement in the fight to eradicate the scourge of sexual assault and domestic violence.  Every woman has the right to live free from fear, intimidation and violence, and over the last 25 years, this transformative, bipartisan legislation has delivered extraordinary progress to achieve this critical mission.

“VAWA is an essential force in uniting our communities and our country in the fight to protect American women, yet, one in three women in our country still suffer from sexual and domestic violence.  This year, the new Democratic Majority acted decisively to overcome outrageous Republican inaction and passed a bipartisan, robust, long-term Violence Against Women Act reauthorization that strengthens and expands essential protections for immigrant, LGBTQ and Native American women.  Among its many lifesaving provisions, this long-overdue legislation improves the services available for victims and survivors, empowers law enforcement to protect their communities, helps stop abusers and stalkers from obtaining firearms, expands housing and anti-discrimination protections, and toughens protections for Native American women.

“Today, as we celebrate 25 years since first enacting this historic legislation, Senate Republicans continue to jeopardize the safety of American women by shamefully refusing to bring our VAWA reauthorization to the Floor for a vote.  In honor of the countless victims, survivors and advocates who are bravely telling their stories and making their voices heard, Senator McConnell must end this life-threatening obstruction and allow a vote on the House-passed legislation, immediately.  Congress has a solemn responsibility to protect the health and well-being of the American people, and House Democrats will continue to act boldly to keep every woman, in every community safe.”