WASHINGTON – Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) reintroduced the Violence Against Indian Women Act (VAIWA) as HR 780 on Friday, Feb. 15. The bill authorizes American Indian tribes to exercise jurisdiction over crimes of domestic violence that occur in Indian Country.
“The current law enforcement system for Native American women is broken,” said Rep. Issa. “Too many victims of domestic violence cannot get access to law enforcement during times of emergency and more will continue to suffer unless Congress acts. VAIWA fills this jurisdictional black hole so that appropriate police and courts can prevent and solve domestic abuse crimes in Indian tribal lands while still ensuring that the accused’s constitutional rights are protected.”
Bill cosponsors include Reps. Mark Amodei (R-NV), Tom Cole (R-Okla.), Jeff Denham (R-Calif.), John Kline (R-Minn.), Patrick McHenry (R-NC), David Schweikert (R-Ariz.), and Michael Simpson (R-Idaho).
– Rep. Issa