Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)

July 1, 2019

Jenna Reardanz, Taylor Scott, & Cagla Giray

Prevention Programs

  • High quality programs are the most successful and cost effective. These programs should focus on cultural and regional relevance, violence across genders, and risk reduction.
  • More evaluation needs to be done in order to ensure that funded programs are evidence based.
  • Ensure cultural and regional relevance of preventative programs. Programs can only be expected to be effective if they take into account the participants cultural contexts.
  • Avoid burdening potential victims by not focusing exclusively on teaching individuals how to protect themselves

Education and Awareness

  • Universal education and awareness programs are good in theory but may not be effective in changing behaviors.
  • Online-only educational programs should not be relied upon until they have been evaluated in more depth.
  • Workplace violence programs should focus on evidence-based programs instead of just awareness as it has not been shown to change behaviors.

Tribal Programs

  • American Indian women are at the highest risk to be the victim of violence, thus funds should be directed towards prevention in this population.
  • More research needs to be done to establish effective programs and understand the impact of cultural context.

Outreach and Support

  • While it is important to focus on female victims it is important to remember that males and non-binary individuals are also be victims and that females can perpetrate violence.
  • Prevention is key, but survivors of violence and abuse need to be empowered through supportive programs post violence.
  • Funds should be targeted toward communities that are underserved and at-risk for violence through resilience or strength based programs.

Key Takeaways

  1. Follow evidence based educational programs and adapt to culture or region as needed.
  2. Direct money towards increasing research towards establishing evidence-based programs
  3. Include men and non-binary individuals as supported individuals.
  4. Focus on interventions that include youth and adults.
  5. Awareness programs may not be the most effective so we may need to target other factors.