Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics
Source: US State of Missouri
JEFFERSON CITY— State Sen. Andrew Koenig, R-Manchester, along with his fellow senators, gave initial bipartisan approval to Senate Bill 569 by perfecting it on Tuesday. This legislation creates an electronic tracking system for sexual assault forensic evidence (SAFE) kits and gives sexual assault victims access to this tracking system to monitor the status of their kit.
“Victims of sexual assault can no longer be ignored,” Sen. Koenig said. “Today, we are one step closer to providing justice for thousands of survivors of sexual assault.”
In addition, Senate Bill 812 was added to SB 569. This language establishes the Sexual Assault Survivors’ Bill of Rights, which includes rights and protections for survivors of sexual assault during any medical examination and interactions with law enforcement, the prosecuting attorney and the defense attorney. Senate Bill 951 was also added to SB 569. This language establishes the Justice for Survivors Act, which provides access to sexual assault nurse examiners.
“I am extremely proud this bill is moving forward,” Sen. Koenig said. “With this legislation, we can further protect victims of sexual assault and give them the resources and support they need to resolve their case. They deserve to know the status of their kit and be involved in this process. For far too long, victims of sexual assault have been treated like second class citizens, and especially so for victims whose kit is one of the thousands of untested SAFE kits sitting in hospitals and police departments across our state. Every victim of sexual assault deserves justice, and I believe this legislation is a step in the right direction.”
Senate Bill 569 needs to receive one more round of approval from the Missouri Senate before moving to the Missouri House of Representatives for its consideration.
For more information about Sen. Koenig’s legislation, please visit his official Senate webpage: senate.mo.gov/Koenig.