The national news at this moment has been devastating. Saturday was a truly shameful day for the U.S. Senate. Kavanaugh’s confirmation was a complete travesty.
Despite these dark days, we must keep fighting and resisting. As Martin Luther King, Jr. once said, the arc of the moral universe may be long, but it will bend toward justice.
Because you have supported sexual assault survivors in their fight for justice, I wanted to mention one bright moment from this past week, here in California. Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 3118, and as of January 1, 2019, our Rape Kit Audit bill will become law.
After years of lack of opposition, our new law will require California law enforcement agencies to audit all of the thousands of backlogged untested rape kits in the state of California.
This law is a major step to justice for survivors who are too often ignored, disbelieved and pushed aside. It’s critical that we know how many untested rapes kits we have in California so that we can identify the resources needed and build the support to test them. I’m grateful to all of you who worked with me to craft, advocate and pass my bill.
Unfortunately, Governor Brown vetoed SB 1449, a companion bill to ours that would have required law enforcement agencies to send rape kits to the lab within 20 days of receiving them and to test them within 120 days. This setback shows that while we should mark the success of AB 3118, the fight for justice continues.
We must keep working not only to clear our rape kit backlog, but to change the culture around rape and sexual assault.
I am honored to work alongside you. At this moment in our country’s history, our fight continues.