On March 8, the expanded Violence Against Women act was signed into law by President Barack Obama to afford added protection to domestic violence, sexual assault and trafficking victims.
According to the official White House site in a news item originally reported by The Huffington Post, this strengthened agreement allows for "thousands of women and men across the country who are victims of domestic violence, sexual assault, dating violence and stalking" to be able "to help heal from their trauma" through certain designated resources available at the community level.
The Violence Against Women Act also gives gay rights advocates and Native Americans renewed hope as the law, one that was delayed after Obama tried to push for the renewal and reassessment of the original 1994 bill in 2012, is finally a legal reality.
Meanwhile, on the day before the annual International Women's Day, President Obama said about the new law he signed, "This is the day of the advocates, the day of the survivors. This is your victory."
By way of background, the Justice Department surveyed women and girls in a nationwide study that showed that, while violent crime had dialed downward, rape and sexual assaults pertaining to women had remained steady.
A dynamic figure shows how serious these problems have become. After studying the situation, it was discovered that for every five women counted, one will be raped at some point during her lifetime. With that in mind, the President spoke to how much more action is so desperately needed since the original bill was introduced two decades ago.
As a way for women to speak out even further, International Women's Day activities have been planned for March 8, 2013.
This celebration, commemorated by way of the United Nations and considered a national holiday in many countries, brings the female gender together from all corners of the earth. It is a time when all women everywhere "can look back to a tradition that represents at least nine decades of struggle for equality, justice, peace and development."
And so, as the Violence Against Women Act was signed by President Barack Obama on March 7, the celebration of International Women's Day on March 8 goes further to bring problems for women to the forefront while celebrating ordinary women who have made history and who will likely continue to make history for the greater good as time goes by. Both events represent various ways and forms for women to experience female empowerment.