WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), John Cornyn (R-TX), Dean Heller (R-NV), and Michael Bennet (D-CO) today introduced the Sexual Assault Forensic Evidence Reporting (SAFER) Act to reauthorize, strengthen, and extend the Sexual Assault Forensic Registry program in an effort to help reduce the national rape kit backlog.
“It’s a tragedy that unprocessed rape kits are sitting in storage when they could hold the answers to unsolved crimes,” Klobuchar said. “Reauthorizing this bipartisan legislation will help law enforcement to reduce the number of untested rape kits and help put perpetrators behind bars.”
In addition to reauthorizing this program, the legislation would ensure pediatric forensic nurses are eligible for training, highlighting the need for pediatric sexual assault nurse examiners in responding to children suffering from abuse.
Klobuchar is a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, and prior to her time in the Senate, Klobuchar served as Hennepin County Attorney. She is a national leader in the fight to prevent domestic violence. Last year, the Klobuchar-backed bipartisan Justice for All Reauthorization Act was signed into law. The law strengthens the rights of crime victims by providing the protection they need to restore their lives and enhances law enforcement’s ability to proactively stop violent criminals. The Justice for All Reauthorization Act also aims to reduce the rape kit backlog by supporting grant programs that fund forensic testing. Klobuchar has also championed the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act and led efforts to pass bipartisan legislation supporting survivors of sexual assault in the military.