In mid-March, President Joe Biden approved a reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). Under this act, the federal government provides increased protections for domestic abuse and sexual violence victims. The VAWA act certainly isn't new – its first enactment was in 1994. However, it lapsed in 2018 due to partisan disputes over gun provisions, mainly to deny the accused of owning firearms. Today, the VAWA act offers hope for victims by allotting resources to those most in need.
The White House released an official factsheet highlighting the most significant changes imposed by this law and its relevance for both accusers and the accused. Although these protections are necessary to protect genuine abuse victims, they also pose challenges for people accused of violence, especially in the absence of legitimate evidence.
What Are the Changes Caused by This Act?
According to the official White House factsheet, reauthorizing the VAWA Act includes:
- Increasing authorization levels and reauthorizing current VAWA grant programs until 2027
- Expanding Tribal court jurisdictions to include non-Native instigators
- Increasing resources and support services for underserved and marginalized communities
- Establishing federal civil causes of action to protect individuals who have sexually explicit or nude images distributed by others without their consent
- Enhancing prevention and responses to claims of sexual violence
- Training law enforcement officials to respond to gender-based violence
- Improving the way healthcare systems respond to victims of domestic violence and assault
- Modernizing the SMART Prevention Program and the CHOOSE Youth Program to reduce dating violence
- Approving the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) Denial Notification Act. This approval assists law enforcement officials when investigating and prosecuting cases against people who buy firearms or try to despite legal prohibitions against them.
These changes are a few of President Biden's many initiatives to protect women that started as a senator and during his presidency. And while these new protections help victims, they can potentially harm innocent people who will experience life-ruining consequences due to a mere allegation.
How Does the VAWA Act Affect Students?
Regardless of the circumstances, every student should be aware of the VAWA Act and its implications if something happens. Just because the accused is a student, it doesn't mean that the new policies initiated by the VAWA Act won't affect them.
For example, many college students face allegations of sexual assault despite their innocence. And unlike other allegations, sexual assault can destroy a student's reputation, career, and life, even if they are untrue. If you face accusations of sexual assault, it's crucial to speak with a professional to prevent the destruction of your reputation and future career.
How an Attorney-Advisor Helps
The VAWA Act is a positive change for victims of sexual assault but has life-changing consequences for accused students. Attorney-Advisor Joseph D. Lento understands what's at stake and works hard to help you when you need professional assistance.
With years of experience working with students nationwide, Attorney-Advisor Lento and the Lento Law Firm alway seeks the best possible outcome for your sexual assault allegation.
Never wait until it's too late to take charge of your reputation. Call the Lento Law Firm at 888-535-3686 for a consultation today.