23 October 2012
SPSSI Central Office will shortly be undertaking some policy work around the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) in the US Congress. This act was due to be reauthorized in 2012, but the two chambers of Congress are struggling to reconcile their versions of the Act because they differ significantly. Since there is a high likelihood that VAWA will be addressed in Congress this November, we are putting together some science-based policy resources, outlining what psychology (and other social sciences) has to say about some of the points of disagreement.
The following areas are of particular interest:
- The impact of community/community organizations on the effectiveness of anti-violence interventions.
- Implicit and explicit prejudice and discrimination against LGBTQ persons (prejudice among service providers is of particular interest).
- Native American populations and non-Native authorities: relationship, trust, and other related topics.
- The (in)effectiveness and psychological outcomes of culturally nonspecific services for victims of domestic violence belonging to racial and/or ethnic minority groups.
- Factors affecting the willingness to report crime among undocumented immigrants.
- The link between the severity of punishment and reporting and prevention of crime.
If you have expertise in any of these areas, have published papers or excerpts that you wish to send, or recommend particular academics who I should reach out to for further information, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-675-6956.
SPSSI Policy Coordinator
The text of the Congressional bills:
Senate Bill: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/112/s1925/text
House Bill: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/112/hr4970/text
VAWA progress before 2012 by the National Domestic Violence Hotline: