Danica Baird, proper, outlines proposed payments through the Utah Coalition Towards Sexual Assault’s advocacy day on Tuesday on the state Capitol in Salt Lake Metropolis. (Jacob Scholl, KSL.com)
Estimated learn time: 3-4 minutes
SALT LAKE CITY — Although the 2022 Utah Legislature is nearing its conclusion, sexual assault prevention advocates imagine there’s nonetheless time to move significant laws to assist the state’s survivors.
On Tuesday, the Utah Coalition Towards Sexual Assault held an advocacy day on the Hill within the hopes of training legislators and members of the general public on what they will do assist finish sexual violence in Utah.
Rape is the one sort of violent crime in Utah that’s larger than the nationwide common, primarily based on the 2019 FBI uniform crime statistics, the coalition stated. For different crimes like murder and theft, Utah has decrease charges than the nationwide common.
These numbers are a lot larger in marginalized communities, in line with Sonya Martinez-Ortiz, the chief director for Salt Lake Metropolis’s Rape Restoration Middle. She stated over 56% of Native People have been victims of sexual violence, and over 20% of Black ladies have been victims of rape.
Liliana Olvera-Arbon, government director of the coalition, instructed KSL.com that 1 in 3 ladies in Utah will expertise some kind of sexual violence of their lifetime, as in comparison with the nationwide common of 1 in 4 ladies experiencing some kind of sexual violence.
“These numbers are gaining, they’re getting greater, they’re rising,” Olvera-Arbon stated Tuesday. “And so we’ve to do one thing.”
Danica Baird, an legal professional and board member on the Utah Coalition Towards Sexual Assault, outlined quite a few payments through the occasion that it hopes will likely be handed earlier than the session formally ends on Friday.
She pointed to items of laws like HB126, which might require the Division of Juvenile Justice Companies to create guidelines and procedures for reporting, stopping and responding to sexual assaults in its services and would carry the state’s juvenile system in compliance with the federal Jail Rape Elimination Act of 2003.
As of Tuesday, the invoice — launched by Rep. Angela Romero, D-Salt Lake Metropolis — was positioned on the Senate’s second studying calendar after passing out of the Senate Enterprise and Labor Committee. It was unanimously handed within the Home on Jan. 28.
One other invoice the coalition hopes will likely be enacted into regulation is HB352, which might require on-line relationship companies to offer and direct individuals to assets if on-line customers are assaulted, Baird stated. The invoice would additionally require on-line relationship companies that don’t conduct background checks on customers to inform their customers that others on the web service haven’t been vetted.
The invoice, additionally launched by Romero, had handed the Home on Friday and had handed the Senate Authorities Operations and Political Subdivisions Committee.
The coalition additionally backed HB228, which eliminates the requirement that sexual assault survivors should cooperate with regulation enforcement to be eligible to obtain advantages from the Utah Workplace for Victims of Crime. The invoice — introduced by Rep. Ken Ivory, R-West Jordan — handed each the Senate and the Home and was despatched for enrolling Tuesday.
Olvera-Arbon stated HB228 is a big step ahead, as some survivors of sexual assault will not be snug coming ahead. However the invoice would permit for therapeutic help and disaster help, which she stated is crucial for the therapeutic course of to start. She additionally hoped for a yearly appropriation quantity of $3 million from the legislature.
“We have gotten actually constructive interplay about these payments, we’re hoping most of them will move,” Olvera-Arbon stated.
Friday will mark the forty fifth and closing day of the 2022 Utah legislative session.