Taking a Stand Around the World
by: Pat Hernandez, January 29, 2010 9:01:00 pm
As a prosecutor and judge in Harris County, Congressman Poe has been a life-long advocate and supporter of victims and children. He says worldwide, one in three women will be the victim of abuse because of her gender at some point in her lifetime. That's why he is co-sponsoring the International Violence Against Women Act.
"What we're trying to do is to have foreign policy that the United States recognizes, and our foreign policy will now help prevent violence against women, especially in third world countries. One way it will do that, is have funding for protocols that are similar to the Houston Area Women's Center, so that other countries will have the opportunity to have an organization that will help prevent violence in their country."
Rebecca White is CEO of the Houston Area Women's Center. She says wherever it takes place, violence against women and girls must not be tolerated.
"We've seen in this country dramatic changes in views about women. And so, we know it's possible change those beliefs around the world. Violence though against women is still a problem here, and we see it everyday. But we live in a society now that won't tolerate it, and we need to offer support to these women and help them rebuild their lives."
The bill creates structural mechanisms in the U.S. State Department and U.S. Agency for International Development and requires the creation of comprehensive strategy to combat violence abroad. Poe says the bipartisan measure could pass as early as the spring.