Under the renewed Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), states will be required to pay for anonymous rape kits starting next year. The requirement is aimed at removing obstacles to prosecuting rape cases, reports the Associated Press.
Rape kits are usually free if the rape victim agrees to file a police report. Requiring states to pay the $800 for "Jane Doe rape kits" gives rape victims time to choose whether or not to prosecute. According to the Associated Press, the FBI has recommended that states pay for anonymous rape tests since 1999.
Anne Bean, clinical director for a rape and sexual assault counseling program in Cecil County, Maryland, said, "Many times you have people who were drunk, maybe doing drugs, maybe they’re underage, and you start talking about the police and they get scared. So, sometimes it’s not until long after [that] they’re willing to report, at which point of course any physical evidence is gone."
The Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network (RAINN) reports that 60 percent of all rapes and sexual assault are not reported. One out of six women in the US have been victims of rape or attempted rape.
Media Resources: Associated Press 05/13/08; AHN 05/13/08; Salon 05/14/08; Feministing.com 05/14/08; RAINN Reporting Rates
11/25/2014 Marissa Alexander Has Accepted a Plea Deal - Marissa Alexander, the woman imprisoned for firing a warning shot in the presence of her abusive husband, chose to accept a plea deal Monday with the state of Florida, pleading guilty to three felony counts of aggravated assault.
As part of the plea deal, Alexander received three years imprisonment, but she will be credited for the time she's spent behind bars. . . .
11/24/2014 The City of Louisville Has Overwhelmingly Approved a CEDAW Resolution - The city of Louisville, Kentucky approved a resolution that will use the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) as a framework for all future policy aimed at ending gender-based discrimination.
Councilwoman Tina Ward-Pugh introduced the resolution, which passed overwhelmingly on November 6. . . .