The International Violence Against Women Act (I-VAWA)

An astonishing one out of every three women worldwide will be physically, sexually, or otherwise abused during her lifetime. The International Violence Against Women Act (I-VAWA) is a noteworthy initiative by the U.S. Government to reduce such violence against women and girls globally. This piece of legislation is designed to support survivors, hold perpetrators accountable, and increase U.S. diplomatic attention to decreasing violence against women.

I-VAWA was introduced in the 110th, 111th, 112th, 113th and the 114th Congresses. I-VAWA has not yet been passed. To find out more about I-VAWA, see the following I-VAWA toolkit, which provides information on the history, purpose and importance of the International Violence Against Women Act.

OPA Involvement

U.S. Baha’i Office of Public Affairs (OPA) representatives co-chaired the first I-VAWA coalition in 2003 and have been actively involved in the coalition’s work for several years. The coalition consisted of more than 50 organizations that worked on efforts to pass the I-VAWA legislation and, thereby, help to eliminate international gender-based violence.

Also in 2003, the OPA representative partnered with the Family Violence Prevention Fund, the International Center for Research on Women, the Congressional Women’s Caucus, and the Congressional Human Rights Caucus to hold a Congressional briefing on the “Intersection of International Violence Against Women and Health Care Costs.” More than 100 Congressional staff and NGO advocates attended the briefing.

Work on I-VAWA has since been taken up by a new entity called the “Coalition to Prevent and Respond to Gender-Based Violence Globally.” Leading organizations supporting this effort include Women Thrive Worldwide, Futures Without Violence, and Amnesty International USA.

For more information regarding I-VAWA, view the Frequently Asked Questions page of our website.