This month, District Two Commissioner Loretta Smith joined with Multnomah County chair Jeff Cogen and Senator Ron Wyden during a press conference, to urge for the re-authorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), which supports and protects women who are victims of domestic violence.

Teri Doyle, a domestic violence survivor, told her story of the support and aid she received all due to the help of VAWA.

The act extends protection to others in the community including gay, lesbian, transgendered, Native American and immigrant survivors, who may have trouble seeking help.

Following the press conference Wyden convened a roundtable discussion with local leaders, Commissioner Loretta Smith. During the discussion, Senator Wyden asked for ideas on how to approach and engage other legislators and domestic violence advocates about the act. Wyden took a specific interest in stressing the support and protection of immigrants under the act. While understanding the total impact of domestic violence to the community, they also discussed the rising percentage of same sex, Native American and immigrant domestic violence.