Across the country, the rape kit backlog is making headlines. Journalists are uncovering backlogs, jurisdictions are implementing reforms to track and test rape kits and citizens are taking action. In the Media Center, you'll find the latest information about the backlog, including: commentary from the ENDTHEBACKLOG staff and backlog reformers, first-person testimonials from those impacted by the backlog, an archive of news articles, op-eds, investigative reports, legislation and government publications we've identified, and more.
THE BACKLOG BLOGAugust 28, 2015
This year also brought an unprecedented amount of activity at the state level aimed at reforming rape kit policies. This is encouraging news because meaningful, uniform change in policies and procedures for rape kit testing will have to happen at the state level: a 50 state solution. Legislators across the country took notice of the rape kit backlog crisis this year. In the 2015 session, 46 pieces of legislation that would address how sexual assault kit evidence is handled were introduced in 25 states, and of those, eleven states enacted bills.
THE BACKLOG BLOGAugust 27, 2015
Cleveland, Detroit and Memphis are all cities that discovered backlogs of untested rape kits in their jurisdictions, tested those kits and entered the DNA profile into CODIS, the national DNA database. Testing these backlogged rape kits has resulted in the identification of nearly 1,000 potential serial rapists.
THE BACKLOG BLOGJune 30, 2015
Recently the Joyful Heart Foundation announced that Charlotte has 1,019 untested rape kits in law enforcement evidence storage facilities.
THE BACKLOG BLOGJune 26, 2015
It is estimated that only between 2 and 8% of rape accusations are false. Yet rape victims face one of the steepest barriers to being believed by the criminal justice system, and their cases are the least likely of any violent crime to move forward through prosecution. Several news articles over the past few days illustrate just how steep that barrier can be.
THE BACKLOG BLOGJune 11, 2015
Joyful Heart praised the Senate Committee on Appropriations' inclusion of $41 million in funding for the Justice Department' sexual assault response initiative in their FY16 funding bill.