What's Happening in Congress Right Now
Every year, Congress is supposed to pass a budget to fund the federal government and vital grant programs such as VAWA, FVPSA and VOCA. Instead of passing a budget this year, Congress is contemplating passing a continuing resolution (CR), which funds the federal government at its current level for a short period.
It is imperative that funding decisions are finalized to ensure survivors can continue to access life-saving services. A CR can create undue delay, confusion, and an interruption of essential services, putting survivors at serious risk. An omnibus appropriations bill, which funds all federal programs for the upcoming fiscal year, ensures a steady funding stream and a continuation of vital services.
What You Can Do About It
Call Senate leadership and tell them to pass an omnibus bill! Tell them:
An omnibus budget is vital to ensure victims and survivors’ safety and access to services;
Thousands of victims and survivors of gender-based violence are turned away from services daily due to lack of resources – a continuing resolution will only exacerbate this problem; and
The omnibus should include a VOCA tribal funding stream reflecting that in both House and Senate Commerce, Justice, Science Appropriations bills.
Tools and Resources
Find your Senators’ phone numbers here.
Sample telephone script: Hello, my name is [your name], and I am calling from [your city and/or organization]. I am calling to tell [your Senator’s name] that Congress needs to pass an omnibus appropriations bill to ensure victims and survivors of gender-based violence have access to essential, life-saving services. The omnibus should include the tribal funding stream from VOCA that was in both the House and Senate Commerce, Justice and Science appropriations bills. An omnibus is essential for victims and survivors’ safety and wellbeing.
Find your Senators’ Twitter handles here:
Sample Tweet: .@YourSenatorsHandle, a CR puts victims and survivors of gender-based violence at risk. Pass an #omnibus! #EndVAW
Sample Facebook Post: Congress needs to pass an omnibus appropriations bill to ensure victims and survivors of gender-based violence have access to essential, life-saving services. The omnibus should include the tribal funding stream from VOCA that was in both the House and Senate Commerce, Justice and Science appropriations bills to ensure all victims and survivors can access services and stay safe.