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ACTION ALERT: Contact Senators about VOCA THIS WEEK!

Senator Schumer is planning to ask the Senate to allow a vote on the VOCA fix this week. We need every Senator to support their plan to pass the bill!

Background

As, you know, on March 17, the House of Representatives passed the VOCA Fix to Sustain the Crime Victims Fund Act of 2021 (“the VOCA Fix Act”) with overwhelming bipartisan support. This critical legislation will prevent devastating cuts to federal funding for victim service programs through the Victims of Crime Act (“VOCA”). Senator Durbin has brought the Senate VOCA Fix bill to the floor twice to ask for unanimous consent to pass the bill, but Senator Toomey objected both times.

The situation is extreme! Federal grants to victim services through the Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) have been cut by two-thirds in the last four years. Congress can fix this by ensuring federal financial penalties from deferred prosecution and non-prosecution agreements are treated the same way as penalties resulting from criminal convictions - that they go to serve and compensate crime victims. But there is hope!

Senator Schumer is asking the Senate to agree to a vote on the VOCA fix this week, which would compromise by also allow a vote on an amendment proposed by Senator Toomey. It is critical that the Senate holds a vote, Senator Toomey’s amendment fails and the VOCA fix passes!

It is time for the Senate to send the VOCA fix to the President’s desk!

On Wednesday, July 14, call, email, and tweet your Senators with this message:

Support Floor action on the VOCA Fix this week! Vote NO on Senator Toomey’s amendment which would kill the bill and vote YES on final passage of the House-passed VOCA fix bill, H.R. 1652. Don’t leave for recess and leave crime victims behind!

Call the US Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121. If you don’t know who your Senators are, click here. You can email them through their websites.

A toolkit with information about how to find their contact information, sample telephone scripts, and sample emails can be found here. Check here to see if your Senators are already sponsors.

Elevate your asks on social media! Here are some sample tweets:

.@[MySenator] Don’t leave for recess and leave crime victims behind! Vote yes on House-passed #VOCAFix & no on the poison pill Toomey amendment. There’s a #Crisis4Victims.

.@[MySenator] Support Floor action on the House-passed #VOCAFix bill this week! Vote yes on final passage and no on the Toomey amendment. Support a clean bill that will help solve the #Crisis4Victims.

.@[MySenator] With each day that passes, millions of dollars are left on the table that could help solve the #Crisis4Victims. Don’t let services disappear as advocates are laid off. Pass the House-passed #VOCAFIx with no amendments before recess!

.@[MySenator] over 1,710 advocates have asked for the #VOCAFix as is. Thank you for sponsoring this legislation. Support the House-passed bill on the Floor with no amendments. https://tinyurl.com/44yde6r3

Don’t let the Senate leave another $545 million on the table while services disappear and advocates are laid off! Take action on July 14!

For more information, contact Rachel Graber (rgraber@ncadv.org).

Posted by Lynn Brewer-Muse at 6:00 AM
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