Frequently Asked Questions
VAWA’s housing safeguards apply to survivors of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and/or stalking. These forms of violence (collectively called “VAWA violence/abuse”) are defined below.
Domestic Violence includes felony or misdemeanor crimes committed by a current or former spouse or intimate partner of the victim under the family or domestic violence laws of the jurisdiction receiving grant funding and, in the case of victim services, includes the use or attempted use of physical abuse or sexual abuse, or a pattern of any other coercive behavior committed, enabled, or solicited to gain or maintain power and control over a victim, including verbal, psychological, economic, or technological abuse that may or may not constitute criminal behavior, by a person who —
(B) is cohabitating, or has cohabitated, with the victim as a spouse or intimate partner;
(C) shares a child in common with the victim; or
(D) commits acts against a youth or adult victim who is protected from those acts under the family or domestic violence laws of the jurisdiction.
Dating violence means violence committed by a person—
(B) where the existence of such a relationship shall be determined based on a consideration of the following factors:
(ii) The type of relationship.
(iii) The frequency of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship.
Sexual Assault is any nonconsensual sexual act proscribed by Federal, tribal, or State law, including when the victim lacks capacity to consent.
Stalking means engaging in a course of conduct directed at a specific person that would cause a reasonable person to— (A) fear for his or her safety or the safety of others; or (B) suffer substantial emotional distress.
National Network to End Domestic Violence
A social change organization dedicated to creating a social, political, and economic environment in which violence against women no longer exists.
Safe Housing Alliance
An organization established to ensure survivors of domestic and sexual violence have access to a full range of housing options.
National Coalition Against Domestic Violence
National organization that supports efforts for change of conditions that lead to domestic violence and holding offenders accountable.
A source of information for those wanting to educate themselves and help others on the many issues related to domestic violence.
Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network (RAINN)
The largest anti-sexual violence organization that carries out programs to prevent sexual violence, help survivors, and ensure that perpetrators are brought to justice.
National Sexual Violence Resource Center
National network of community-based rape crisis centers and local organizations who support the needs of sexual assault survivors.
Office on Human Trafficking in Persons – Grantees
Provides information and resources about human trafficking.
Domestic Victims of Human Trafficking Program Grantees
A list of grantees throughout the United States offering services to victims of human trafficking.
Freedom Network USA
A network of trafficking survivors, legal and social service providers, researchers, advocacy organizations, and consultants ensuring survivors have access to justice, safety and opportunity.
Ujima, Inc.: National Center on Violence Against Women in the Black Community A national resource center whose mission is to mobilize the community to respond to and end domestic, sexual and community violence within the Black community.
National Organization of Sisters of Color Ending Sexual Assault (SCESA) An advocacy organization of Women of Color dedicated to working with the communities to create a just society in which all Women of Color are able to live healthy lives free of violence.
National Organization of Asians and Pacific Islanders Ending Sexual Assault (NAPIESV) A program under Monsoon Asians & Pacific Islanders in Solidarity, supporting local and international community-based programs and governmental organizations in enhancing their services to victims of sexual violence from the Asian and Pacific Islander communities in the U.S., U.S. Territories in the Pacific, and Asia.
If you are in danger, please call 911 or a national hotline. HUD is not a direct service provider and does not provide individual counseling, crisis response, or legal services to individuals who have experienced domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, stalking, and/or human trafficking. For more information and to connect to a local service provider in your area, please see Help for Survivors.
Please be aware that web browsers (Firefox, Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer) often track which websites you visit, which can be viewed in the search history. This information could put you at further risk if discovered by a perpetrator, so please be cautious and clear your browsing history. To find out how to clear your browsing history, click here. If possible, you may want to use a computer that the perpetrator is unlikely to use, such as at a public library.