NOW NEEDS YOUR HELP: TRUMP NOMINEE FOR OFFICE ON VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN (OVW) IS UNQUALIFIED AND DANGEROUS

We need YOUR HELP in sending an urgent message to your Senator to block the confirmation of Shannon Lee Goessling to head the Office on Violence Against Women (OVW) in the U.S. Department of Justice. OVW administers grant programs that are established under VAWA, which are used to provide effective responses to violence against women. Trump-nominatedGoessling is grossly unqualified for the role, and would bring dangerous and detrimental views on domestic violence with her, if confirmed.

A hearing in the Senate Judiciary Committee on the nominee is set for Thursday, March 7, so getting in touch with your senator as soon as possible is important. One (or possibly two) of your senators sits on the Senate Judiciary Committee, and can vote to block Goessling from receiving a floor vote.

Judiciary Committee Members:

Sen. Lindsay Graham (R – S.C.) is committee chair; other Republican members are; Chuck Grassley (Iowa), Michael S. Lee (Utah), Thom Tillis (N.C.), Mike Crapo (Idaho), Marsha Blackburn (Mo.) John Cornyn (Tex.) Ted Cruz (Tex), Joni Ernst (Iowa.) and John Kennedy (La.). Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) is the ranking member for the minority; other Democrats include Sens. Patrick Leahy (Vt.), Sheldon Whitehouse (R.I.), Christopher Coons (Del.), Mazie Hirono (Hawaii.), Kamala Harris (Calif.), Dick Durbin (Ill.), Amy Klobuchar (Minn.), Richard Blumenthal (Conn.) and Cory Booker (N.J.)

Talking Points:

  • Goessling has spent the last eleven years working as Executive Director and Chief Legal Counsel for an anti-gun control, anti-LGBTQIA, anti-racial justice, and anti-immigrant organization, the Southeastern Legal Foundation (SLF).
  • OVW grants are very competitive, and distribution of grants is left to the discretion of OVW. This makes the decision of where to award grants very difficult. The input and agenda of the director of OVW has the potential to impact who gets the money, and what issues are prioritized when selecting grant recipients.
  • OVW needs a competent and qualified director to make these decisions, especially after VAWA is reauthorized. Goessling fits none of the qualifications.
  • Goessling alleges that widespread gun ownership would protect women, though the very opposite is clear. Read NOW’s Issue Advisory HERE about the significant link between domestic violence and gun violence.
  • If Goessling heads OVW, she could redirect grant funding from important organizations and programs that protect survivors, to anti-gun control organizations that put women more at risk.
  • Goessling claims she worked on pro-bono domestic violence cases for 13 years as a lawyer in Georgia, though she only worked on one related case in that 13-year period. She has little to no experience on the issue of domestic violence. OVW deserves someone who is qualified!

To block Goessling, we need both Republicans and Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee to vote NO on reporting the nominee out for a full floor vote.

We have the opportunity to prevent an unqualified nominee, with dangerous views, from undermining important programs that protect survivors of sexual and domestic violence.

PLEASE CONTACT YOUR SENATOR NOW! Ask to speak with a staff person who deals with the Senate Judiciary Committee,if possible, or ask for the staff person who handles women’s issues and leave a voicemail if you can. Call the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121 or click here to find your senator’s office phone numbers.  If you send an email message, you will need to go to the senator’s website to enter the message.

THANK YOU FOR ENERYTHING YOU DO FOR WOMEN AND FOR NOW!

Sample Call:

Senator, and member of the Senate Judiciary Committee,

The Office on Violence Against Women (OVW) administers important grant programs to develop effective responses to violence against women. This office is incredibly important, and needs a qualified leader with experience who understands issues of violence against women.

As your constituent, I am urging you to oppose the confirmation of Shannon Lee Goessling to head the Office on Violence Against Women (OVW). Shannon Lee Goessling is unqualified for the role and has no experience working on issues of violence against women. Though she claims to have done pro-bono work on domestic violence, court records show only one instance of her working on such a case. Do we want the person working on the largest grant program in the United States for combatting violence against women to have no knowledge or experience on the subject?

OVW needs a competent and qualified director to make these decisions on grant allocations. Goessling is neither competent nor qualified. Goessling also alleges that widespread gun ownership would protect women, though experts can attest that gun violence and violence against women are linked.

I am urging you strongly to oppose the confirmation of nominee-Goessling, and I ask that you speak with your colleagues to encourage unity in opposing this dangerous nomine. Thank you for the opportunity to share my deepest concern on this vital matter.

Sample Email:

The Office on Violence Against Women (OVW) administers important grant programs to develop effective responses to violence against women. This office is incredibly important, and needs a qualified leader with experience who understands issues of violence against women.

As your constituent, I am urging you to oppose the confirmation of Shannon Lee Goessling to head the Office on Violence Against Women (OVW). Shannon Lee Goessling is unqualified for the role and has no experience working on issues on violence against women. Though she claims to have done pro-bono work on domestic violence, court records show only one instance of her working on such a case. Do we want the person working on the largest grant program in the United States for combatting violence against women to have no knowledge or experience on the subject?

OVW needs a competent and qualified director to make these decisions on grant allocations. Goessling is neither competent nor qualified. Goessling also alleges that widespread gun ownership would protect women, though experts can attest that gun violence and violence against women are linked.

I am urging you strongly to oppose the confirmation of nominee-Goessling, and I ask that you speak with your colleagues to encourage unity in opposing this dangerous nomine. Thank you for the opportunity to share my deepest concern on this vital matter.