Congresswoman Ann McLane Kuster

Representing the 2nd District of New Hampshire
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Kuster to Host Chessy Prout at State of the Union

Jan 19, 2018
Press Release

[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, announced today that she will be hosting Chessy Prout as her guest at the State of the Union. Kuster will also be joining fellow members in wearing black in support of the #MeToo movement and the efforts to end sexual harassment and assault.

“I’ve been inspired by the incredible strength and courage of Chessy as she has grown into a strong advocate on behalf of survivors of sexual assault and harassment,” said Congresswoman Kuster. “The conversation about sexual harassment and assault in our nation is long overdue but through the efforts of Chessy and the #MeToo movement it is finally gaining steam. This is an issue that is deeply personal to me and I’m excited to host Chessy to signal that this national movement will continue to grow and succeed.”

“Congresswoman Kuster is a fierce champion for survivors,” said Chessy Prout. “I am honored to be her guest while showing support of survivors of sexual assault by wearing all black.” 

Congresswoman Kuster has long been a champion for victims and survivors of sexual and domestic violence. Kuster shared her own personal experiences involving sexual assault on the House floor and joined with 17 other Members of Congress to read Emily Doe’s open letter describing her attack and ensuing trial – which marked the first time a victim’s statement has been read in full in the House chambers.

Congresswoman Kuster launched the Bipartisan Task Force to End Sexual Violence in 2017 with her colleagues, Representatives Patrick Meehan (PA-07), Jackie Speier (CA-14), and David Joyce (OH-14). The Task Force focuses on K-12 healthy relationships education, college campus safety, the sexual assault kit backlog, military sexual trauma, harassment online and in the workplace, and improved data collection and law enforcement training. Since its formation in April 2017, the Task Force has held hearings on its areas of focus, and hosted educational briefings for Members and staff to raise awareness about the primary policy issues related to sexual violence. The Task Force will release its legislative agenda this winter.

Chessy Prout is a high school sexual assault survivor. As a freshman at St. Paul’s School, Chessy was the victim of a sexual assault. Chessy’s case and the trial garnered national and international media attention. Two years later, in Chessy’s pursuit of justice, she decided to step forward publicly. In August 2016 she launched the #IHaveTheRightTo initiative with the organization PAVE, for which she is an ambassador. As a PAVE ambassador, Chessy travels around the country to speak about the importance of consent education in K-12 schools; encourages survivors and others to assert their most important, basic rights; and uses her voice to let other survivors know that they are not alone.