Ending Sexual Violence
Sexual violence cuts across party lines and affects women, men, and families in every single part of this country. It’s also an issue that’s deeply personal for me. In 2016, for the first time, I shared my own experiences with sexual violence. Doing so was not easy. The stigma that surrounds this issue has silenced many survivors, but it's long past time we shatter that silence.
In April 2017, I launched the Bipartisan Task Force to End Sexual Violence with my colleagues and co-chairs, Representatives Jackie Speier (CA-14) and David Joyce (OH-14). Since then, Representative John Katko (NY-24) has joined us as a co-chair. The task force is driving legislation and policy that will support survivors of sexual assault and educate our fellow members of Congress as well as the public about how we can end this persistent problem.
Areas of the Task Force’s focus include: K-12 education, college campus safety, the rape kit backlog, military sexual trauma, ending online harassment, improved data and collection, and law enforcement training. Throughout the 116th Congress, the Task Force will be holding hearings on its areas of focus and hosting educational briefings for staff and Members to raise awareness about the primary policy issues related to sexual violence.
I am a long-time advocate for survivors. In 2017, I hosted a panel discussion about sexual violence at the US Capitol featuring three brave women: Julia Dixon, Delaney Henderson, and Chessy Prout. I am proud to use my platform to help amplify the voices of other survivors.
There are also legislative actions Congress can take to help end sexual violence. I partnered with Congresswoman Speier to introduce the Safe Transfer Act, which would require the inclusion of information about sexual assault on college transcripts. We also introduced the Hold Accountable and Lend Transparency on (HALT) Campus Sexual Violence Act, which would require the Department of Education to publicly disclose schools that are under federal Title IX investigation, as well as strengthen penalties for schools that are in violation, among other reforms.
If you, or someone you know, is struggling with sexual violence or harassment, the following resources can provide support and guidance:
New Hampshire Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence
National Sexual Assault Hotline
More on Ending Sexual Violence
Hopkinton, NH – Today, Rep. Annie Kuster (NH-02), co-chair of the Bipartisan Task Force to End Sexual Violence, participated in a virtual Energy and Commerce Committee hearing to address tribal community challenges, including alarming rates of sexual violence. During the hearing titled, “Addressing the Urgent Needs of Our Tribal Communities,” Kuster and her committee colleagues heard from Dr.
**Watch Rep. Kuster’s line of questioning here.**
Like so many of you, my heart breaks for the death of George Floyd, his family and loved ones, and the Minneapolis community. America is crying out in pain and frustration over the profound loss of over 100,000 lives from COVID-19 and the disproportionate impact on communities of color. Black Americans face an equally deadly virus in the racism and bias of their daily lives, culminating in violence, and even murder at the hands of the police.
WASHINGTON – Amid concerns of increasing domestic violence as the COVID-19 pandemic continues, U.S. Senators Maggie Hassan and Jeanne Shaheen and Representatives Annie Kuster and Chris Pappas are pushing for additional funding to expand housing options for domestic violence survivors in the next COVID-19 emergency package.
(Washington, DC) – U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) – the lead Democrat of the Appropriations Subcommittee that funds Violence Against Women Act programs – and U.S. Senator Maggie Hassan and Representatives Annie Kuster (NH-02) and Chris Pappas (NH-01) issued the following statement regarding the release of offenders convicted of domestic violence and sex offenses amid the coronavirus pandemic, and urged courts and officials in New Hampshire to issue guidance prohibiting their release.
Concord, NH – Today, Rep. Annie Kuster (D-NH), founder and co-chair of the Bipartisan Task Force to End Sexual Violence, was joined by Representatives Jackie Speier (D-CA), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), Debbie Dingell (D-MI), Gwen Moore (D-WI), and 86 other Members in sending a second bipartisan letter urging Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy to provide funds for domestic and sexual violence programs.
Concord, NH – Representatives Annie Kuster (D-NH), Jackie Speier (D-CA), Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), and Elissa Slotkin (D-MI) were joined by 46 Members of Congress in sending a letter to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and Assistant Secretary Kenneth Marcus, urging them to abandon the Administration’s reckless plans – amid the novel coronavirus pandemic – to finalize regulations that would gut civil rights protections for survivors under Title IX.
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Washington, DC –Reps. Annie Kuster (NH-02) and Pete Stauber (MN-08) introduced the Clery Compliance Officer Designation Act of 2020, legislation directing schools to designate specific staff to ensure the accurate and timely reporting of sexual violence and other crimes on college and university campuses.