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With VAWA Veto And Prison-Rape Rule, Obama Takes Strong Stance Against Sexual Violence

Today the Justice Department today mandated a new set of strict rules to prevent, detect and respond to sexual abuse in juvenile detention centers and adult prisons and jails, the White House revealed.

Addressing the Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003 (PREA), the measures are the first effort to set standards for protecting inmates from rape and sexual assault on the local, state and federal level. “The standards we establish today reflect the fact that sexual assault crimes committed within our correctional facilities can have devastating consequences – for individual victims and for communities far beyond our jails and prisons,” said Attorney General Eric Holder.  “These standards are the result of a thoughtful and deliberative process—and represent a critical step forward in protecting the rights and safety of all Americans.”

Of particular note, the rules include mandates to “Screen inmates for risk of being sexually abused or sexually abusive” and “incorporate [the] unique vulnerabilities of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and gender nonconforming inmates into training and screening protocols.”

This is the second edict the Obama Administration has issued to help address the issue of sexual vuilence: On Tuesday, the White House threatened to veto the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) if protections for LGBT victims were not added back to the bill. “No sexual assault or domestic violence victim should be beaten, hurt, or killed because they could not access needed support, assistance, and protection,” read a statement from the Office of Management and Budget.

The Senate approved a version of VAWA that didn’t include provisions for gay victims in late April—a bill the House just passed 222-205 on Wednesday. It remains to be seen if President Obama will indeed nix the act in hopes of sending it back to Congress.

“It is unfortunate—though not surprising—that some lawmakers refuse to acknowledge the basic dignity and respect LGBT domestic-violence victims deserve,” said HRC director Joe Solomonese. “These lawmakers are leaving victims out in the cold with nowhere to turn for help.”

 Photo: Brian Snelson

By:           Dan Avery
On:           May 17, 2012
Tagged: , , ,

  • 14 Comments
    • JayKay
      JayKay

      “No sexual assault or domestic violence victim should be beaten, hurt, or killed because they could not access needed support, assistance, and protection.”

      …….You know, unless they happen to be men victimized by women.

      May 17, 2012 at 3:02 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Big Ben
      Big Ben

      @JayKay: Touche, my friend, touche.

      May 17, 2012 at 3:16 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Sarge
      Sarge

      Is this website for gay men and women or is it a propaganda tool for the president? Looking at these stories and the overwhelming praise heaped on Obama while blasting Romney, I have to wonder.

      May 17, 2012 at 3:29 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • QJ201
      QJ201

      @Sarge: Troll.
      When Romney says something LGBT positive, then perhaps Queerty may praise him.

      May 17, 2012 at 3:49 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Clockwork
      Clockwork

      @Sarge:
      >Is this website for gay men and women or is it a propaganda tool for the president?
      Most gay men and women ARE propaganda tools for this president.

      There are many people who’s sole goal is to get GLBT wording stuffed into as much legislation as possible, irregardless if it effective.

      May 17, 2012 at 4:09 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Andy
      Andy

      “Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003″

      Hey, seems like Dubya was the first gay president :roll:

      May 17, 2012 at 4:14 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • mcc
      mcc

      i can see people bitching in the past. he didnt expend political capital to stick up for us….

      then dadt got killed, the doj stopped defending doma, and now president obama has come out publicly in support of gay marriage right before the election..

      this man has been our greatest ally in office ever. i have enough money to make voting republican the smart choice, and i still won’t because i dont support hate mongers who ride on our backs and create hate for us as a way to win elections.

      and sorry for being a grammar nazi, but seriously.. irregardless?

      May 17, 2012 at 8:30 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Clockwork
      Clockwork

      @mcc:
      >and sorry for being a grammar nazi, but seriously.. irregardless?

      Being a grammar Nazi on this site is like handing out speeding tickets at the Indianapolis 500, (thank you Martin Sheen).

      >i have enough money to make voting republican the smart choice

      This shows how lost you are, being poor makes voting Republican (sorry dude republican is not a party) the smart choice. The poor become middle class in a growing economy, (see President Clinton’s policies). If Obama gets a second term the poor will stay poor, the middle class will be stuck in the middle, and wealthy Democrats will pat themselves on the back for reelecting a president that said “gay” once a week for eight years.

      May 18, 2012 at 12:31 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Daez
      Daez

      @Clockwork: Funny, but you really need to explain how eliminating food stamps,, Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, unemployment, and access to affordable healthcare not only helps the poor but makes them the new middle class. While you are at it you can explain how requiring a worker at Wal-Mart to pay 30% of their wages in taxes on the whole $10,000 they make every year while only requiring billionaires and millionaires to pay 15% helps the poor.

      Now, on the subject of the topic, I can totally understand how we should blow federal money insuring that rapists, murderers and child molesters do not get raped in prison…. Oh wait, no I can not.

      May 18, 2012 at 8:01 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • skippy
      skippy

      @Sarge: you’re a clueless tool obviously..why wouldn’t this website say things that are anti romney and pro obama???..duh!

      May 18, 2012 at 10:22 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Clockwork
      Clockwork

      @Daez:
      I’ll try this one:

      >While you are at it you can explain how requiring a worker at Wal-Mart to pay 30% of their
      >wages in taxes on the whole $10,000 they make every year while only requiring billionaires
      >and millionaires to pay 15% helps the poor.

      Dude, you are so off base on your knowledge of taxes.

      $10000 is in the %10 tax rate AT BEST, they would likely pay less or may even pay zero tax.

      I won’t even bother with the rest. As I’ve said I come here to post sincere beliefs, get a feel for what my fellow GLBT’ers are thinking, and for the comedy,

      May 18, 2012 at 11:37 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      The thing is this: sexual assault and domestic violence DOES HAPPEN IN LGBT RELAATIONSHIPS. We exist, and we have many of the same problems heterosexual couples do, up to and including domestic violence.

      This isn’t about marriage equality or anything like that. This is about protecting people. Human beings. If they are so hateful that they do not care about that, then I just do not know what else to say.

      May 18, 2012 at 3:00 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Clockwork
      Clockwork

      @Shannon1981:
      >If they are so hateful that they do not care about that, then I just do not know what else
      to say.

      People can oppose wording of legislation without being “for” what it is intended to protect or stop.

      If I sponsored a bill titled the “Black Christian Church Protection Act” which was intended to preserve tax exempt status for Black churches that were involved with prop 8: and you opposed it –

      Does that mean you are against Black churches? How can you be against allowing Black people to worship? If you don’t believe in the 1st amendment for Black people, I feel sorry for you.

      Of course that is not your position, you just believe a bill of this type does not address the underlying problem in a direct and solvable manner.
      But then a complicated debate on policy rarely serves the GLBT political community.
      Keep it simple, keep it emotional, and call the opposition haters.

      May 18, 2012 at 5:53 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Ross H. Smith
      Ross H. Smith

      Prison rape is HOT!!

      May 20, 2012 at 6:56 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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