I am a sexual assault survivor. It does not define me, but it is part of my story. It is the part of too many women’s (and men’s) stories and is a scourge on our society. Those of us in New York’s government must work to ensure that future generations of women are safe from sexual assault throughout the State.
What We’ve Accomplished
We passed the Child Victims Act to allow for true justice for those who experienced sexual assault and could not speak up at the time. We have held hearings to help change the culture of Albany itself with respect to sexual assault. We passed Erin’s Law, so that all school-age children in New York have the tools to report instances of sexual abuse in order to stop and prevent further harm, as well as provide reassurance to students that they can and should speak up if they feel unsafe.
Where We Need to Go
We must pass a bill defining affirmative consent in the penal code so that the law is clear on when yes means yes, and not just that no means no. We must finally pass my bill that closes the voluntary intoxication loophole in our sexual assault laws. We must amend the evidentiary law so that a victim’s disclosure in cases of sexual abuse is admissible regardless of when the disclosure was made relative to the abuse. We must pass the rides without rape bill to help ensure women’s safety in commercial vehicles. And we must do better at providing trauma informed care for those who have experienced sexual assault and provide for it in health care.