"Never will I stop having flashbacks and nightmares, and never will I be able to have a normal relationship with anyone, because I am too far from being normal again."
Late last year, the Kansas City Star, a newspaper in my home state of Missouri, reported this heartbreaking account of a victim who had been sexually assaulted for years and then publicly shamed and disowned after coming forward to seek justice.
As a mother, it is pure instinct to want to reach out and help protect this young woman, reassure her it's not her fault and tell her that her perpetrator deserved every single day of the 50-year sentence he received. As a lawmaker, I feel blessed to be in a position where I can help make a difference...
...Last year I co-sponsored the bipartisan Sexual Assault Survivor's Bill of Rights
, federal legislation that provides a list of recommended protections and procedures for states to voluntarily adopt that would ensure sexual assault victims have access to justice.