Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (H.R. 4116)
On November 19, 2009, a bill to reauthorize the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA) was introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives. The FVPSA Reauthorization Act of 2009 (H.R. 4116) revises the requirements for and reauthorizes the FVPSA at increased levels for FY2010-FY2014. This act is the only federal funding source dedicated to domestic violence shelters and programs. FVPSA’s reauthorization offers victims hope as it will allow domestic violence programs to continue and end the vicious cycle of violence.
It’s no surprise that domestic violence programs have felt the impact of the economic downturn and many are struggling to meet the growing demand with shrinking budgets. Reauthorizing FVPSA will:
• Allow communities to continue to provide life-saving services to domestic violence victims and their children including emergency shelters, crisis lines, counseling, and advocacy;
• Assist underserved communities; and
• Help break the violence cycle.
The General Federation of Women’s Clubs can band together by flexing its legislative muscle and encourage Congress to pass this life-saving bill. Engaging governmental officials is the best way to further GFWC’s leadership efforts in domestic violence awareness and prevention. As Domestic Violence Awareness is GFWC’s Signature Project, it’s imperative for clubwomen to contact their representatives to ensure that this bill is passed and monies are available. When victims who face life-threatening abuse reach for help, we must make sure they can receive the support they need.
We need you to call your Representatives today and encourage them to co-sponsor this vital piece of legislation, H.R. 4116. Click here (Ctl. + click) or log on to http://www.house.gov/house/MemberWWW_by_State.shtml to find your representative. Your calls make a difference!
• Say hello; state your name; and let them know where you are from. [“Hello, my name is ____________ and I am a constituent from ______________ (your city and state.)”]
• Let them know why you are calling. [“I am calling to strongly urge Rep. __________ (last name) to co-co-sponsor H.R. 4116, the Family Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA) introduced by Representatives Gewn Moore (D-WI), Aaron Schock (R-IL), Judy Biggert (R-IL), and Gregorio Sablan (I-NMI).”
• FVPSA expired last year and reauthorization is imperative as it’s the only dedicated source of federal funding for life-saving services to domestic violence victims and their children.
• $250 million is needed to respond to the domestic violence victims’ needs.
• There are approximately 2,000 community-based domestic violence programs serving approximately 300,000 victims and their children annually.
• FVPSA is effective. The domestic violence shelters and programs it funds address both the urgent and long-term needs of victims and help victims protect themselves and their children.
• If you have time, share a story about how domestic violence services have positively impacted your community.
• Don’t forget to mention that you are a GFWC member.
For more information, please contact GFWC Senior Director of Public Affairs Michele Mount at MMount@GFWC.org or 202/347-3171.