Press Release: Arizona Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence Responds to Governor Ducey’s Executive Order Regarding Untested Rape Kits
For Immediate Release:
Contact: Jessye Johnson, Chief Operating Officer
Arizona Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence
p: 602-279-2900 x415
The Arizona Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence issued the following statement regarding Governor Ducey’s Executive Order on the rape kit backlog in Arizona
Today during the State of the State, Governor Ducey announced his commitment to ending the rape kit backlog in Arizona. During his address the Governor outlined the current issue in Arizona, noting that there are over 2,300 untested kits in Maricopa County alone, with an unknown amount of untested kits in the balance of state.
As part of the plan to address the backlog, the Governor has signed an Executive Order establishing the Arizona Sexual Assault Evidence Collection Kit Task Force. This task force is developed for the purpose of developing a statewide protocol for testing sexual assault kits, develop a tracking system for untested kits, and identify the breadth of the current problem in Arizona.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 5 women and 1 in 71 men have been raped in their lifetime. When a victim of sexual assault/rape chooses to have a forensic exam and DNA is collected in a rape kit, the testing of that kit is imperative to holding perpetrators accountable and possibly preventing future sexual assaults.
“We thank Governor Ducey for making sexual assault rape kits and the victims they represent a priority during the State of the State Address today,” said Allie Bones, Chief Executive Office for the Arizona Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence. “We look forward to working with the Task Force to address the issue of untested kits which will further support victims and hold perpetrators accountable for the crime they have committed.”
The Governor also mentioned in the State of the State that his budget will include additional funding to address the backlog, but he did not give specifics. The Governor’s budget is expected to be released by the end of the week.
The Arizona Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence is a nonprofit agency for the purpose of ending sexual and domestic violence in Arizona. Our mission is to lead, to advocate, to education, to collaborate, to prevent and end sexual and domestic violence in Arizona.
Help is available for anyone who has experienced sexual and/or domestic violence. If you or someone you know are in immediate danger, call 911. For more information or to talk to an advocate, please call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE(7233), the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE(4673) or the Arizona Coalition to End Sexual and Domestic Violence at 1-800-782-6400.