My name is Jackie, and this summer I am a Policy & Advocacy Intern for Joyful Heart. I graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Brown University this past May with a B.A. in political science. In the fall I will begin my legal studies at Harvard Law School, where I plan to explore the numerous dimensions of family law, with a focus on sexual assault and domestic violence law.
My interest in engaging with issues related to sexual violence and child abuse led me to this position at Joyful Heart. Having spent the first eight years of my life in an abusive household, I am committed to discovering how policy and advocacy can protect victims and heal survivors of sexual assault. My experiences in public interest law and family law have also furthered my desire to work on behalf of victims of sexual violence. After interning in legal and government settings for the past three summers, I am excited to learn about the role that powerful advocacy groups such as Joyful Heart play in effecting positive change and in aiding victims of sexual assault.
Working on the ENDTHEBACKLOG project this summer has already allowed me to understand how multiple forces—the law, advocacy groups, local police stations, crime labs—all work to shape the effectiveness of the legal system in bringing justice to victims of sexual assault. I plan to bring this nuanced understanding with me to law school, which will no doubt allow me to engage with issues of sexual violence on a deeper level.
- By Jackie Katz, June 24, 2014
You can look out for more of Jackie's posts this summer.
ENDTHEBACKLOG is a program of the Joyful Heart Foundation to shine a light on the backlog of untested rape kits throughout the United States. Our goal is to end this injustice by conducting groundbreaking research identifying the extent of the nation’s backlog and best practices for eliminating it, expanding the national dialogue on rape kit testing through increased public awareness, engaging communities and government agencies and officials and advocating for comprehensive rape kit reform legislation and policies at the local, state and federal levels. We urge you to learn more about the backlog, where it exists and why it matters. We invite you to take action and support efforts to test rape kits. Help us send the message that we must take rape seriously.