President signs a comprehensive reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act

On March 7, President Obama signed the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (P.L. 1134) into law, marking the culmination of years of advocacy by APA members and staff.

The comprehensive reauthorization was passed with bipartisan support in the U.S. Senate and House, and includes key provisions to provide greater protections for immigrants, LGBT and American Indian, Alaska Native and Pacific Islander survivors. The law also includes key language sought by APA to improve the health care system's response to intimate partner violence by:

  • Integrating treatment and referral for domestic and sexual violence into family planning, adolescent health and home visitation programs.

  • Supporting partners — including health professional schools, allied health training programs and national health and trauma-related associations — to develop, implement, evaluate and disseminate education and training curricula to respond to lifetime exposure to violence and abuse. 

  • Providing for research to evaluate effective interventions within the health care setting to prevent violence and abuse across the life span; to address and prevent the physical and mental health effects of such violence; and to improve the safety and physical and mental health of individuals that are currently being victimized.

On March 7, President Obama signed the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (P.L. 1134) into law, marking the culmination of multiple years of advocacy by APA members and staff. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

On March 7, President Obama signed the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013 (P.L. 1134) into law, marking the culmination of multiple years of advocacy by APA members and staff. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)