Issue: Improving Assistance to Domestic and Sexual Violence Victims Act of 2009
Legislation has been introduced to amend the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 and the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968 to improve assistance to domestic and sexual violence victims and provide for technical corrections.
No formal position
The Improving Assistance to Domestic and Sexual Violence Victims Act of 2009 (S 327) amends the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 to: (1) amend certain definitions, grant conditions, and matching fund requirements under such Act; (2) expand the role of the national resource center on workplace responses to domestic violence to require information and assistance to victim service providers and other community-based organizations and coalitions; and (3) expand requirements for providing culturally and linguistically specific services to domestic and sexual violence victims.
The measure would also amend grant provisions under the violence against women program of the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968 to: (1) impose limits on Internet publication of protection order information in domestic violence cases; (2) expand the prohibition against requiring victims of sexual assaults to take polygraph exams; (3) exempt victims of dating violence from certain costs for criminal proceedings and protection orders; (4) require forensic medical exams to be administered by health care professionals (currently, trained examiners); and (5) expand grant purposes to include evidence preservation, sexually transmitted infection testing, and treatment for victims of sexual assault.
Additionally, S 327 would amend the Immigration and Nationality Act, the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, and the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008 to expand protections for aliens who are domestic violence and sex trafficking victims.
Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) introduced the Improving Assistance to Domestic and Sexual Violence Victims Act of 2009 (S 327) on 1/26/09. The Senate Judiciary Committee recommended the legislation favorably on 5/7/09.