The V Word

Advocating to end sexual and domestic violence



The V Word: DV and African American Women

Today we continue our focus on Domestic Violence Awareness Month with a look at African American Women and the additional barriers they face toward accessing services.


WRIR 97.3 FM 

YWCA of Richmond

Statewide Hotline of the Action Alliance

The V Word: Domestic Violence Awareness Month

October launches Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Today’s show focuses on facts about domestic and interpersonal violence and resources available in the community.


WRIR 97.3 FM 

YWCA of Richmond 

Statewide Hotline of the Action Alliance

V-Word Radio Show: The Link between mass shootings and domestic violence.

Emily Westerholm visits the link between mass shootings and domestic violence.

You can listen to the show here


WRIR 97.3 FM

National Network to End Domestic Violence

Virginia Domestic and Sexual Violence Action Alliance

National Coalition Against Domestic Violence

The V Word: An Interview with the YWCA of Richmond

Today’s show is an hour long special. Becky Lee and Carol Ann Lajoie of the YWCA of Richmond talk about upcoming campaigns, the state of funding in Virginia and their new regional collaborative hotline.

You can listen to the episode here


YWCA of Richmond

Show is broadcast on WRIR 97.3 FM and streamed at

National Domestic Violence Awareness Month – 2014

Today Barack Obama published a proclamation about Domestic Violence.  While it is always nice to have your President publicly support efforts to end domestic violence, I do wish it was something that was said everyday as it is a daily problem. I have included excerpts below.  You can read the entire proclamation here.

Presidential Proclamation

Domestic violence affects every American. It harms our communities, weakens the foundation of our Nation, and hurts those we love most. It is an affront to our basic decency and humanity, and it must end. During National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, we acknowledge the progress made in reducing these shameful crimes, embrace the basic human right to be free from violence and abuse, and recognize that more work remains until every individual is able to live free from fear.

Last month, we reached the 20th anniversary of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). This act is helping change the perception of domestic violence and helping communities work toward increasing funding and making changes. Recently two new campaigns:

1 is 2 Many initiative launched by VP Biden. This initiative is going to raise awareness about dating violence. You can see the PSA here

“It’s on Us” campaign – part of the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault to address the intersection of sexual assault and dating violence on college campuses.

It’s Time to Ask: What will Congress do to get VAWA passed

Domestic Violence Awareness Month
It’s time to ask–What will Congress do to get VAWA passed

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and an ideal time to ask Virginia’s Congressional Delegation to commit to passing VAWA as a matter of priority during the lame duck session. The recent report from the Office of Chief Medical Examiner indicates that while homicides in Virginia have gone down, intimate partner homicides in Virginia have increased by an alarming amount–21% between 2009 and 2010.

Requested Action
Email, call, tweet, or tell your Members of Congress (who are now back in their districts until after the elections) this simple message:

“October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. We all play a role in ending domestic violence. Congress’s role is to pass VAWA – lifesaving legislation that has transformed the way our nation addresses violence against women. It is essential that a strong, bipartisan VAWA, that safely and effectively meets the needs of all victims, is promptly reauthorized after the elections. Will you commit to passing VAWA as a matter of priority during the lame duck session?”

Use the tweets below, post on Facebook/websites, and/or have this conversation when you see your Members of Congress at events.

Oct is #DVAM2012 . Do your part to end violence against women. Let’s pass #VAWA

Support #DVAM2012! Commit to passing a #VAWA that safely and effectively meets the needs of all victims.

Fact: #VAWA saves lives! Reauthorization must be a priority after the elections

The Background
Despite our collective hard work urging Congress to pass VAWA, they did not do so before they left for recess. As you know, passing major legislation can be contentious in an election year and VAWA’s reauthorization became more politicized than it ever had been in the past. There is still an opportunity, however, for Congress to reauthorize VAWA after the elections (during the “lame duck” session). With the combination of additional pressure from you throughout October and the work of NNEDV and others at the national level, we believe that it is very likely that Congress will act on VAWA upon their return.

So keep up the pressure right through this election cycle—urge your Member of Congress to prioritize post-election passage of a VAWA reauthorization bill that safely and effectively protects all victims.

Click here to find your Representative:

Click here to find your Senator:

About the Action Alliance
The Action Alliance has been Virginia’s leading voice on sexual and domestic violence for 30 years and enhances response and prevention efforts through training, public policy advocacy, public awareness programs, and technical assistance to professionals. To find out more about the Action Alliance, call 804.377.0335,, or visit us on the web: You may also call the Virginia Family Violence & Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-838-8238 (v/tty).

Address postal inquiries to:
Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alli
5008 Monument Ave.
Ste. A
Richmond, VA 23230
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Help Get VAWA passed

We have made so much progress on VAWA! Let’s capitalize on that and get VAWA passed before the end of the year!

During the past year, our collective work ensured that the Senate passed a bipartisan, inclusive and survivor-focused Violence Against Women Re-Authorization bill and have kept Congress and the media focused on the needs of survivors! Our advocacy ensured that a dangerous VAWA bill in the House passed by with limited and very partisan support. At the beginning of October, Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM), the White House issued a statement<> acknowledging the need for inclusive responses to domestic violence: “Despite considerable progress in reducing domestic violence, an average of three women in the United States lose their lives every day as a result of these unconscionable acts. And while women between the ages of 16 and 24 are among the most vulnerable to intimate partner violence, domestic violence affects people regardless of gender, age, sexual orientation, race, or religion.” At the same time, the issue of rape has remained front and center in our nation’s consciousness and a comprehensive policy response is needed.

We can capitalize on our momentum and the public focus on women’s issues and get VAWA passed by the end of this year! But to do so we need to make sure that VAWA is an election issue and a priority for every legislator during the “lame duck” session in Congress (after they come back from the election through the end of the year).

Let’s keep the pressure on – because together we can get this bill passed!

Your representatives<> and senators are home campaigning. Call their district offices with this message and also send it by email:

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and 3 women lose their lives every day to this crime. 1 in 4 women and 1 in 7 men have been the victim of severe physical violence by an intimate partner. Rape, affecting 1 in 5 women and 1 in 71 men, is unacceptable. ALL victims of violence must be protected. Yet VAWA expired over a year ago. VAWA reauthorization MUST be a priority in the lame duck session! Please tell your colleagues and Congressional leadership that you want to see VAWA reauthorized now. Will you publicly state before the election that passing VAWA this year is one of your highest priorities?

You can also tweet:
@[your legislator]: What are you doing to make sure #VAWA is reauthorized in lame duck? #DVAM2012

@[your legislator]: Make #VAWA a lame duck priority – reauthorize it now! #DVAM2012

@[your legislator]: Rape is rape. Will you let rape victims know you want to help? Prioritize passing #VAWA in lame duck.

@[your legislator]: Oct is DV Awareness Month. Reauthorize #VAWA now for ALL survivors! #DVAM2012

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