The Backlog:

Massachusetts

We do not know the extent of the backlog in Massachusetts. Like many states, Massachusetts does not require its law enforcement agencies to track or count rape kits, making it difficult to know the extent of the rape kit backlog here. However, legislation recently introduced in Massachusetts could soon change that.  

There are currently four state bills pending. In 2015, legislators in Massachusetts introduced HB-1278, which would require law enforcement to collect rape kits from the hospital for delivery to the crime lab within 24 hours, and would establish a statewide rape kit tracking system with notification rights to victims. In 2016, three additional pieces of legislation were introduced, HB-3454, SB-836 and SB-1134. HB-3454 would require law enforcement agencies to submit rape kits to a crime lab within 30 days, and the crime lab to complete analysis within 180 days. Additionally, the bill mandated the submission of all previously untested kits and a report to the legislature by January 1, 2016, however the report has not yet been published. SB-836 would establish a statewide rape kit tracking system and would require police notification of rape kit collection within four hours and collection and delivery to lab within 24 hours, and would increase victim notification rights. SB-1134 would direct the Massachusetts Executive Office of Public Safety to conduct a study that would examine the effectiveness and cost of a rape kit tracking system that would accessible to both  law enforcement and survivors.

If passed, Massachusetts would join a growing number of states all across the country making real reforms to end the backlog. 

Join us and take action today to advocate for transparency and change from our elected officials.

  • Backlog Status

Count
Unknown
Testing
Testing Status Unknown
Resolved
Unknown
Size
?
  • Reform Status

Tracking Testing Victim Notification
No Known Reform
Reform in Progress
Partial Reform
Complete Reform
  • Additional Information

Through The Accountability Project, we are using public records requests to bring the number of untested kits in Boston to light.

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