Bennet-Backed Provisions in Bill Aimed at Increasing Safety on Campus and Strengthening Protections Against Domestic and Sexual Violence
Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet today celebrated Senate passage of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), which he cosponsored, during a meeting with students, volunteers and staff at the University of Colorado at Boulder.
“Too often, victims of sexual assault and domestic violence do not feel comfortable coming forward, have to wait far too long for justice or do not have access to resources that can help them,” said Bennet. “This bill will help support efforts at CU and in the Boulder community to prevent these crimes, encourage more women to come forward, prosecute these cases and provide support for victims. I’m glad the Senate was able to pass this bill with bipartisan support, and I hope the House will do the same soon.”
During the event, Bennet highlighted how VAWA will make CU-Boulder campus and the larger Boulder community safer by providing essential resources to state and local law enforcement to investigate and prosecute crimes and to non-profit organizations that supply essential services for victims and survivors.
VAWA also includes a provision based on the bipartisan Campus Sexual Violence Elimination Act, or the Campus SaVE Act, which Bennet cosponsored. This measure would increase safety on college campuses by improving reporting of incidents of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking, increasing transparency by improving information about schools’ prevention programs and disciplinary actions and ensuring that victims are aware of their rights and resources available to them.
Across the country, more than one in five female undergraduates will be victims of sexual assault or attempted sexual assault during their time on a campus. Only a fraction of these incidents are reported, and many victims go without adequate institutional support.
VAWA, which was originally enacted as Title IV of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, advances efforts to combat domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking.
Since VAWA was originally enacted, reporting of domestic violence has increased by as much as 51 percent. More victims are coming forward and receiving lifesaving services to help them move from crisis to stability.