U.S. Senator Brian Schatz (D-Hawai‘i), chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, and U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), vice chairman of the Committee, released the following statements on inclusion of the Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization Act of 2022 (VAWA) in a bipartisan appropriations deal. The bill now heads to the President’s desk to be signed into law.
“Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization Act of 2022’s tribal provisions will restore justice for Native communities and provide tools to keep Native families safe,” said Chairman Schatz. “Committee members’ contributions strengthened this important bill, paving the way for swift Senate passage. I am grateful for my bipartisan partnership with Vice Chairman Murkowski and look forward to seeing the Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization Act of 2022 signed into law.”
“Every Native person should feel safe in their own homes and communities. But for too long, Alaska Native people have faced staggeringly high rates of interpersonal violence, domestic violence, and sexual assault,” said Vice Chairman Murkowski. “Native leaders have worked tirelessly to address this issue, but the unique and complex jurisdictional landscape in Alaska and on reservations has stood in the way. I worked with Chairman Schatz to draft the tribal title of the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, which was included in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2022. This title includes my Alaska tribal public safety empowerment pilot program, allowing some villages to assume local control over local public safety matters, if they are selected and have adequate safeguards. Jurisdictional issues should not deny safety or justice. Tribes are valuable partners with the State and Federal governments and can help turn the tide against violence in Native communities.”
To read more of the News Release from the U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs article, please click here.