About Cristina Finch

Cristina M. Finch currently serves as the managing director for the women’s human rights program at Amnesty International USA (AIUSA) and as an adjunct law professor at George Mason University School of Law. At AIUSA, Cristina focuses on women and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) human rights; economic, social and cultural rights; and multilateral issues. Prior to joining AIUSA in October 2009, Cristina served as senior counsel to the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) from 2005 to 2009. As senior counsel, Cristina provided legal and policy expertise on a range of human rights issues including hate crimes, immigration, military, judicial nominations, work/family legislation, international issues, and the separation of church and state. Before HRC, she served as legislative counsel to Congressman Alcee Hastings (D-FL); as house legal counsel to the Congress of the Republic of Palau; as an associate at the law firm of Thiemann, Aitken and Vohra; and, as a fellow at the U.S. Department of State. Prior to attending law school, Cristina worked for Rep. Jim Barcia (D-MI). Cristina is also a former AIUSA intern. She holds a JD from George Mason University, and a BA from the University of Michigan.
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Why Won’t Congress Pass the International Violence Against Women Act?

Supporters of the Violence Against Women Act dance in Farragut Square as part of the V-DAY’s One Billion Rising dance party and rally to stop violence against women (Photo Credit: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call).

Supporters of the Violence Against Women Act dance in Farragut Square as part of the V-DAY’s One Billion Rising dance party and rally to stop violence against women (Photo Credit: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call).

As November 25, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, approaches and the International Violence Against Women Act is poised for reintroduction in the U.S. Congress, the time is now to prioritize ending violence against women and girls worldwide.

Violence against women takes many forms, including rape, domestic violence, female genital mutilation, and acid attacks, to name just a few. It’s a global human rights crisis that exacerbates instability and insecurity around the world.

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Five Reasons to Be Excited About Passage of the Violence Against Women Act

Activists unite in Farragut Square in Washington, D.C. for the One Billion Rising event (Photo Credit: Sarah K. Eddy)

(Photo Credit: Sarah K. Eddy)

We did it! The groundbreaking Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) was just passed by the House of Representatives and will now be sent to President Obama for his signature!

It’s been a long road to victory. I wrote earlier this year about the indefensible demise of VAWA in the last Congress. The last Congress missed a momentous opportunity to stand up for the safety of all women. So women – and men – stood up for themselves; on February 14, 2013, Amnesty International joined the One Billion Rising movement to stand up, walk out, and dance to end violence against women globally. We called for Congress to quit the partisan politics and finally pass a Violence Against Women Act that included ALL communities.

Since then, we have seen the new Congress introduce and pass VAWA in the Senate and now the House has followed suit.

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We Danced with a Purpose: Amnesty and One Billion Rising

One Billion Rising in Washington, DC

Amnesty activists rise up with One Billion Rising in Washington, DC. ©Sarah K. Eddy

Yesterday, in Washington, DC I awoke to reports of thousands of women and men dancing in India, South Africa, Australia and around the globe in support of One Billion Rising, a public uprising in response to the human rights abuse of violence against women and girls. I saw a video of my friends at Flying Broom, a Turkish women’s organization, dancing in solidarity to support their campaign to end child marriage. And I read hundreds of tweets from people who had or were about to dance to end violence against women.

Amnesty International is proud to have joined with One Billion Rising to raise awareness – and to take action – to end violence against women and girls. We danced and raised our voices to stand as one with the estimated one billion women and girls whose lives have been touched by violence.

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10 Reasons to Move to the Music and End Violence Against Women

One Billion Rising
On February 14th, Amnesty will join with V-Day in the One Billion Rising campaign to dance in solidarity with the estimated one billion women and girls who have experienced violence in their lifetime.

Violence against women is one of the world’s most pervasive human rights abuses. It is also one of the most hidden. Globally, one woman in three has been beaten, coerced into sex, or abused in her lifetime and yet, justice for these abuses is all too rare.

In the U.S., the Violence Against Women Act is a groundbreaking law that helps break the cycle of impunity for violence.  Currently up for reauthorization in Congress, you can add your voice to ask for immediate action.

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