Native Village 
Youth and Education News

April 1, 2013

International Women's Day 2013: Smiling American Indian Women Warm the Heart
http://www.nativenewsnetwork.com
Condensed by Native Village

President Obama Signs VAWA

Every year on March 8, International Women's Day is celebrated. This year was an historic one for women in Indian country.  President Barack Obama signed the Violence Against Women Reauthorization Act of 2013, commonly known as VAWA.

VAWA contains tribal jurisdiction provisions that are now part of federal law. Now perpetrators of violence against Indian women will be appropriately punished.

Non-Natives have a long history of taking advantage of Native lands, resources, and people, especially women. This is not "victim-talk" -- it's a harsh reality in Indian country:

Native women are 10 times more likely to suffer a violent death than Caucasian

46% of American Indian women have experienced rape, physical violence, and/or stalking by a partner

Until VAWA, little could be done to punish non-native males who committed rape, physical violence or stalking against Native women on Indian reservations. The tribal jurisdiction provisions now allow for non-Natives to be prosecuted, tried and sentenced in tribal courts.

Much credit goes to Native women and the National Congress of American Indians Task Force on Violence Against Women for their relentless efforts to get the new provisions into federal law.


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