A reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) has officially passed in the House of Representatives, and now heads to the Senate, where it’s poised to face staunch Republican opposition over the gun control measures it contains.

This legislation makes critical changes to VAWA, which was the first federal law to ever comprehensively confront violence against women including domestic abuse, sexual assault, and stalking by allocating grant money to combat and investigate these offenses.

First authored by then-Sen. Joe Biden and the late Rep. Louise Slaughter in 1994, VAWA has been updated multiple times since then in order to best address current needs that people face. In 2013, for instance, lawmakers pushed through changes that would extend the provisions of the law to cover same-sex couples.