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. Last year, 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, 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). The task force will drive 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 rest of the 115th Congress, the Task Force will be holding hearings on its areas of focus, developing and releasing a legislative agenda, 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. Earlier this year, 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. Last year, 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
(Washington, DC) – Today, Congresswoman Annie Kuster (NH-02), the founder and co-chair of the Bipartisan Task Force to End Sexual Violence, released the following statement on the passage of H.R. 4924, the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 Reform Act, and H. Res. 724.
This week, I had the honor of the hosting Chessy Prout as my guest at the State of the Union. I’ve been inspired by the courage of Chessy in coming forward with her experiences with sexual assault and her powerful advocacy on behalf of survivors everywhere.
(Washington, DC) – In solidarity with the #MeToo movement, several Members of Congress, including Reps. Annie Kuster (NH-02), Lois Frankel (FL-21), Brenda Lawrence (MI-14), Jackie Speier (CA-14), Bonnie Watson Coleman (NJ-12), Susan Davis (CA-53), Katherine Clark (MA-05), and Mike Quigley (IL-05), will bring sexual harassment survivors and advocates as guests to President Trump’s State of the Union address tonight at 9:00 PM ET.
(Washington, DC) – Today, U.S. Representatives Annie Kuster (D-NH) and Michael Turner (R-OH) joined Senators Claire McCaskill (D-MO) and Ron Johnson (R-WI) to introduce legislation to improve sexual violence data collection at key federal agencies. The legislation will implement recommendations from a Government Accountability Office report that found vast differences in data collection efforts—including the use of 23 different terms to describe sexual violence.
[April 5, 2017 – Washington, DC – Congresswoman Annie Kuster and Chessy Prout at the launch of the Bipartisan Task Force to End Sexual Violence]
A high-resolution version of the photo is available HERE.
(Washington, DC) – Congresswoman Annie Kuster (NH-02), the founder and co-chair of the Bipartisan Task Force to End Sexual Violence, applauded passage of legislation that will require harassment training for all Members of Congress, staff members, interns, and fellows. Kuster co-sponsored the measure which passed unanimously.
(Concord, NH) – Congresswoman Annie Kuster (NH-02), the co-founder and co-chair of the Bipartisan Task Force to End Sexual Violence and an original co-sponsor of the Member and Employee Training and Oversight On (ME TOO) Congress Act, released the following statement on the allegations of sexual harassment made against Representative John Conyers:
(Washington, DC) – Today, Congresswoman Jackie Speier (D-CA) and U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), along with Representatives Ryan Costello (R-PA), Ann McLane Kuster (D-NH), and Bruce Poliquin (R-ME) introduced bipartisan, comprehensive legislation to prevent and respond to sexual harassment in Congress. The Member and Employee Training and Oversight On (ME TOO) Congress Act will require more transparency, overhaul the flawed complaint process, and provide better support for victims and whistleblowers.