Sexual Assault Victims’ Right to Information Act Passes Senate
Mike Seals - April 21, 2021 10:15 pm
OKLAHOMA CITY – Legislation that expedites the process to get sexual assault survivors resources for trauma care passed the Senate on Wednesday with bipartisan support.
The Sexual Assault Victims’ Right to Information Act (House Bill 2546), authored by Rep. Cyndi Munson, D-OKC and Sen. Kay Floyd, D-OKC, expands protections to victims of sexual assault regardless of participation in a criminal investigation of their assault. The act also allows for an advocate to be made available during a sexual assault examination.
“Sexual assault survivors are often put in a situation where they have to put their lives back together due to no fault of their own,” Munson said. “This legislation ensures that these survivors are provided with the resources to begin that healing process as soon as possible.”
A 2018 OSBI study showed that over a two-decade period, rape case clearances by Oklahoma law enforcement, due to myriad reasons, dropped significantly from 62% to just 22%.
“With this legislation, we are ensuring sexual assault survivors, regardless of the criminal aspects of the case, are provided with resources to address their trauma,” Floyd said. “When approaching survivors of assault, our first response should be care for the victim. That is what we are hoping to accomplish with House Bill 2546.”
April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month.