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      Lawmakers make a VAWA to protect women

      Girls Inc. in Albany, Georgia.

      The U.S. House of Representatives has passed the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) and it was one of southwest Georgia's local organizations that helped convince officials to pass the law.

      Girls Inc. representatives and supporters have been rallying for the passing of this legislation.

      The new VAWA law includes increased protections for teens, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender women, and Native American women.

      The law allows for law enforcement and prosecutors to hold abusers and rapists accountable, while providing improved resources for women.

      It provides for girls, for all women, on a national platform and it's important that women have these outlets to know that they can be safe and secure and when they're not, to know where they can go, said Barbara Rivera Holmes, President of the Girls Inc. Board of Trustees.

      Officials say this is a large step towards becoming a society where girls and women are free from fear of domestic violence.

      The new law expires in 2018.

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