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Rep.Zwiener, Erin

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Two of Rep Zwiener’s Bills to Fight Sexual Assault Pass Out of Committee  print page

by: Rep. Zwiener, Erin

Austin, TX — State Representative Erin Zwiener (Driftwood) logged another victory in the fight against sexual assault this week as two bills passed out of the Homeland Security and Public Safety Committee yesterday. House Bill 2672 and HB 2678 seek to give researchers and advocates the tools they need to understand the breadth of sexual assault in Texas and better train investigators and prosecutors on how to best handle these cases.

"This is a significant step in the fight for victims of sexual violence," Rep. Zwiener said. "Because there is no single source of data that provides a complete picture of crimes related to sexual assault offenses in Texas, a disproportionate number of crimes continue to go unsolved and faith in our legal system is eroded. With this legislation, we can better understand why victims of sexual violence aren’t as likely to receive justice as victims of other crimes. It is my hope the legislation will now be brought to the floor and passed with bipartisan support."

HB 2672 would require the Department of Public Safety to compile and release data about the number of sexual assault reports, referrals for prosecution, and attempted prosecutions while HB 2678 would monitor and compile statistics involving sexual assault victims who receive a forensic medical examination before reporting the assault to law enforcement. Rep. Zwiener has introduced four bills related to addressing sexual misconduct.

Rep. Zwiener’s Sexual Misconduct Bills:

• HB 2278 would increase the window in which a sexual harassment claim can be made from 180 days to a full two years.
• HB 2279 would allow the Texas Workforce Commission to accept sexual harassment claims from employees of companies of all sizes. (Senator Zaffirini is carrying the companion, SB 46.)
• HB 2672 would create a study to be conducted by the Texas Department of Public Safety to investigate the disparity between sexual assault offenses and actual prosecution.
• HB 2678 requires the Texas Department of Public Safety to compile and maintain statistics on the number of victims of sexual assault to a law enforcement agency after receiving a forensic medical examination.

Media Contact: Graham Senor

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