The legislation in both the House and Senate includes improvements to housing protections for victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking. The new Senate legislation omits one controversial provision, an expansion of U visas for immigrant victims of abuse.
The legislation was passed in the Senate on February 11, 2013 with both U.S. Senators Lautenberg and Menendez voting “yes.” The vote was 78-to-22 and included strong bipartisan support.
Click here for The New York Times coverage of the Senate vote.
Key housing provisions in the bill include:
Making it illegal to evict a victim from federally subsidized housing for reasons related to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking. The bill expands the list of federal housing programs covered under VAWA.
Allowing for the bifurcation of leases for tenants of programs covered under VAWA, if they are seeking the lease bifurcation for reasons related to domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, or stalking.
Requiring HUD to establish policies and procedures for emergency transfers for victims living in HUD-assisted housing, in which depending on availability, victims would be eligible for tenant protection vouchers.