Local organization prepares for impact after Violence Against Women Act dies

Posted at 11:49 PM, Jan 03, 2013
and last updated 2013-01-03 23:49:04-05

The last Congress passed 151 bills. That's the fewest in 65 years!

And a piece of legislation that didn't pass involves one of the oldest organizations in the nation that serves women— the YWCA.

The "Violence Against Women Act" wasn't funded, and now the chapter in Hampton Roads is preparing for what could be a financial disaster.

Domestic violence accounts for one third of all homicides in Virginia.

In late November, the body of Mandi Myers was found inside a closet in her Virginia Beach home.

Her family believes was she was a victim of domestic violence here in Hampton Roads.

In 2011, there were more than 5,000 victims of forcible rape, sodomy and assault according to state officials.

Tuesday, Congress decided against re-authorizing a bill that could help reduce those numbers.

It's called the Violence Against Women Act, or VAWA—which provides funding for things like rape crisis centers, community violence prevention and legal help for female victims.

Kristen Pine, director of response for the YWCA of South Hampton Roads says the decision by Congress was shameful.

Half of the funding for the their programs comes from VAWA.