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NCC joins the call to Congress to reauthorize
the Violence Against Women ACT


Washington, December 12, 2011 – The National Council of Churches has joined nearly 150 national and regional ecumenical, interfaith, and advocacy organizations to call on Congress to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 (VAWA).


The Act, which creates an office within the Department of Justice to develop federal policies around issues relating to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking, is scheduled for reauthorization this year.


Churches and faith organizations have been actively supportive of VAWA, said the Rev. Ann Tiemeyer, program director of the National Council of Churches Women's Ministries Program.


“The church not only has a role in calling upon our Government to reauthorize and fund VAWA,” Tiemeyer said. “We also need to be safe places where women can come for assistance and healing. We need to preach out against all forms of intimate partner violence and work in partnership with our government to accomplish this goal.”

The nationwide Ecumenical Advocacy Days in 2010 set VAWA as a primary topic to discuss with members of Congress when delegates visited Capitol Hill, Tiemeyer noted. Knowing that re-authorization was coming this fall, we have been building on this work since last March.


Organizations signing on to a letter to members of Congress today said, “Since its original passage in 1994, VAWA has dramatically enhanced our nation’s response to violence against women.


“More victims report domestic violence to the police and the rate of non-fatal intimate partner violence against women has decreased by 63 percent,” the letter said.


“The sexual assault services program in VAWA helps rape crisis centers keep their doors open to provide the frontline response to victims of rape. VAWA provides for a coordinated community approach, improving collaboration between law enforcement and victim services providers to better meet the needs of victims. 


“These comprehensive and cost-effective programs not only save lives, they also save money,” the letter said.  “In fact, VAWA saved nearly $12.6 billion in net averted social costs in just its first six years.” 


The letter said reauthorization of VAWA will “build upon its successes and continue to enhance our nation’s ability to hold perpetrators accountable and keep victims and their children safe from future harm.”

The full text of the letter to Congress is here


Signers of the letter to Congress include:


Alianza-National Latino Alliance to End Domestic Violence

Alternatives to Family Violence

American Association of University Women

American College of Nurse-Midwives

American Probation and Parole Association

American Psychiatric Association

Americans Overseas Domestic Crisis Center

ASHA for Women

Asian & Pacific Islander Institute on Domestic Violence

ASISTA Immigration Assistance
Association of Jewish Family and Children’s Agencies

Association of Prosecuting Attorneys

Association of Reproductive Health Professionals

Black Women’s Health Imperative

Break the Cycle

Casa de Esperanza

Church of the Brethren

Coalition of Labor Union Women

Deaf Abused Women’s Network

Disciples Justice Action Network

Disciples Women of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)

Domestic Violence Report

Feminist Majority/Feminist Majority Foundation

Futures Without Violence (formerly the Family Violence Prevention Fund)

General Federation of Women’s Clubs

Institute on Domestic Violence in the African-American Community

International Association of Forensic Nurses

Japanese American Citizens League

Jewish Council for Public Affairs

Jewish Women International

Joyful Heart Foundation

Legal Momentum

MANA – A National Latina Organization

Men Can Stop Rape

Mennonite Central Committee US

Methodist Federation for Social Action

National Alliance to End Sexual Violence

National Association of Counties

National Association of VOCA Assistance Administrators

National Center for Victims of Crime

National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence

National Coalition Against Domestic Violence

National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs

National Congress of American Indians Violence Against Women Task Force

National Council of Jewish Women

National Council of Negro Women

National Council on Independent Living

National Council of Churches of Christ in the USA

National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges

National Council of Women’s Organizations

National Dating Abuse Hotline

National Domestic Violence Hotline

National Housing Law Project

National Institute of Crime Prevention

National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health

National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty

National Legal Aid and Defender Association

National Network to End Domestic Violence

National Organization for Women

National Organization of Sisters of Color Ending Sexual Assault

National Women’s Political Caucus

National Resource Center on Domestic Violence

National Resource Sharing Project

NETWORK – A National Catholic Social Justice Lobby

9to5, National Association of Working Women

Nursing Network on Violence Against Women International

Planned Parenthood Federation of America

Rape Abuse and Incest National Network

Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law

Service Women’s Action Network

Sexuality Information and Education Council of the United States

Tribal Law and Policy Institute

Union for Reform Judaism

United Church of Christ

United Methodist Church (General Board of Church and Society)

Voices of Men

Witness Justice

Women’s Information Network

Women’s Law Project

Women of Color Network



State and local sign-ons:


Advocates Against Family Violence, Caldwell, ID

AYUDA, Inc., Washington, DC

Beyond Survival Sexual Assault Resource Center Greys Harbor Cnty, Aberdeen, WA

Bridges of Williamson County, TN

Choices Domestic Violence Solutions, Gardena, CA

Christian Women Alive, Troy, MI

Cleveland Rape Crisis Center, Cleveland, OH

Crime Victim and Sexual Violence Center, Albany, NY

Crisis Center and Women’s Shelter, Ottumwa, IA

Crisis Council, Troy, NC

Cross Roads Safe House, Fort Collins, CO

DC Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Washington, DC

District Alliance for Safe Housing, Washington, DC

Domestic and Sexual Violence Services, Red Lodge, MT

Domestic Violence Project, Canton, OH

Drogheda Project, Shattuc, IL

Family Shelter Service, Wheaton, IL

Family Services, Green Bay, WI

Hope Center, Faribault, MN

Human Options, Inc., Irvine, CA

Gateway Family Services, Snyder, TX

Life Source Consultants, Inc., St. Louis, MO

Mass 2-1-1, Framingham, MA

Meriden-Wallingford Chrysalis, Meridan, CT

Middleway House, Bloomington, IN

Monsoon United Asian Women, IA

My Sister’s Place, Washington, DC

My Sister’s Place, White Plains, NY

Nassau County Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Bethpage, NY

New York Asian Women’s Center, New York, NY

Panhandle Crisis Center, Perryton, TX

Peace Over Violence, Los Angeles, CA

Rainbow Response Coalition, Washington, DC

Ramona’s Way, Washington, DC

Rare Diamond Minds, Baltimore, MD

The Retreat, Suffolk County, NY

SoLatina, Revere, MA

Someplace Safe, Fergus Falls, MN

South Dakota Coalition Ending Domestic and Sexual Violence

South Suburban Family Shelter, Homewood, IL

S.T.A.C.I.E. Foundation, Cincinnati, OH

The Support Center, Omak, WA

Survivors and Advocates For Empowerment, Washington, DC

Texas Association Against Sexual Assault, Austin, TX

Trainings, Transitions, Teams, Overland Park, KS

Turnaround Coaching, Inc., Gilbert, AZ

Voices of Hope, Lincoln, NE

VIBS—Family Violence and Rape Crisis Center, Holbrook, NY

WEAVE—Washington Empowered Against Violence, Washington, DC

Women Against Abuse, Philadelphia, PA

Women in Transition, Philadelphia, PA

YWCA Alaska, Anchorage, AK

YWCA, Dayton, OH

YWCA Lancaster, Lancaster, PA

YWCA DV/SA Resource Center, Clinton, IA

YWCA DV/SA Resource Center Jackson, Maquoketa, IA

YWCA Greater Cincinnati, OH

YWCA Greater Harrisburg, PA

YWCA Greater Triangle

YWCA, Hartford, CT

YWCA Metropolitan Chicago, Chicago, IL

YWCA Monterey County, Salinas, CA

YWCA of the Sauk Valley, Sterling, IL

YWCA Fort Worth & Tarrant County, TX
YWCA South
Hampton Roads, VA

YWCA, Spokane, WA


Since its founding in 1950, the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA has been the leading force for shared ecumenical witness among Christians in the United States. The NCC's 37 member communions -- from a wide spectrum of Protestant, Anglican, Orthodox, Evangelical, historic African American and Living Peace churches -- include 45 million persons in more than 100,000 local congregations in communities across the nation.

NCC News contact:  Philip E. Jenks, 212-870-2228 (office), 646-853-4212 (cell),


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