Saturday, March 12, 2022

Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization Act of 2022

H.R. 2471, the large spending bill with Ukraine aid, included the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) Reauthorization Act of 2022 without problematic provisions some in Congress were attempting to add several years ago.

The 2013 version of VAWA included non-discrimination grant requirements that included sexual orientation and gender identity.

It also defined “underserved populations” to include individuals who face a barrier in access to services because of their sexual orientation and gender identity.

This language was followed up by an FAQ document that limited the ability of faith-based organizations to operate in accordance with their faith and limited the ability of organizations and shelters to serve only biological women.

This 2022 reauthorization makes no changes or clarifications to those problems.

Further, it codifies new grant programs and expands existing grant programs to emphasize a priority on LGBT services. It also creates a new grant program to combat violence on college campuses that includes a focus on “reproductive and sexual coercion,” which may be interpreted to include abortion.

Planned Parenthood has historically received STOP grants under VAWA, including $500,000 between 2016-2018, though it may also be eligible for other grant programs under the bill.

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