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Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)

Violence Against Women Act

The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) has funded the investigation and prosecution of violent crimes against women since 1994. This watershed law created benchmarks at the federal level for what constitutes rape and battery and provided funding for victims’ services and violence prevention and training programs. In 2013, the Campus Sexual Violence Elimination (SaVE) Act was added to VAWA as an amendment, clarifying standards for minimum disciplinary procedures and requiring colleges and universities receiving federal funds to provide written rights to students and victims as well as violence recognition and prevention training for students and employees.

In October 2014, the Department of Education published its final regulations for the VAWA amendments, which expanded the categories of violence covered in the Act to include stalking, domestic violence and dating violence; outlined new definitions for acts of sexual aggression; mandated expanded prevention and awareness programs on college campuses; and increased the notifications institutions must provide to the campus community about the institution’s responsibility to assist victims, how victims can obtain help, and victims’ and alleged perpetrators’ rights under the law. The amendments took effect in March 2015.

Resources

Please visit the United States Department of Justice: Office on Violence Against Women for more detailed information.

Additionally, please review the following documents as a reference regarding the Violence Against Women Act (VaWA) as it applies to Higher Education.