Policy News: Two New Utah Laws for Survivors, Resources

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Policy News: Two New Utah Laws for Survivors, Resources

Categories: News, Policy News

July Policy Newsletter

This month we share two new laws that went into effect that help survivors of violence. We also share updates on the latest U.S. Supreme Court decisions that impact domestic violence survivors as well as a resources for serving trans and non-binary survivors of violence. We talk about how child care providers can access a $2,000 bonus from the State of Utah. Finally, we invite you to a Community Care Block Party! 

Two New Utah Laws that Support Survivors

Removing Barriers to Reparations for Survivors of Sexual Assault

HB 228 Crime Victim Reparations Amendments (Rep. Ivory, Sen. Iwamoto)

Survivors of sexual assault are no longer required to report their crime to law enforcement in order to qualify for crime victim reparations. Now, a survivor’s victim advocate can complete a questionnaire provided by the Utah Office for Victims of Crime (UOVC) and the survivor can submit that along with their UOVC application.

This is a significant change that acknowledges that most incidents of sexual assault go unreported to law enforcement, yet there still is a need to provide critical support for survivors. In 2016 in Utah, only 23.2% of rape or sexual assault were reported to law enforcement.

If you or someone you know has experienced rape or sexual assault, there are resources available.

Rape Recovery Center 24 hour helplines:

1-888-421-1100 (English), 801-924-0860 (Español)

YWCA Utah’s Salt Lake Area Family Justice Center, FJCSANE

24-hour Sexual Assault Exams (Code R) (801) 537-8600

To learn more about rape and sexual assault statistics in your county, visit the Utah Department of Health’s Public Health Indicator Based Information System.

Promoting Safe Housing for Survivors of Domestic Violence

HB 359 Eviction Records Amendments (Rep. Judkins, Sen. Cullimore) This new law allows for automatic expungements and expungements by petition. Before this law was enacted, a rental eviction stayed on Utahn’s permanent court record making it hard to find a new place to rent. This has been particularly devastating to families who faced eviction due to domestic violence-related incidents, which also leads to quickly mounting eviction-related debt. Domestic violence is a leading cause of homelessness for survivors and their children. This law will promote safe and stable housing for survivors and their families.

To find out more, visit the Utah Court’s website on Expunging Eviction Records. 

The Latest Supreme Court Decisions Impacting Survivors of Domestic Violence
The National Network to End Domestic Violence released a summary of four recent SCOTUS decisions that impact survivors, here.Additionally, read Utah Domestic Violence Coalition’s statement on the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe, here.
Bonus for Utah Child Care Workers
The Office of Child Care is giving child care workers a $2,000 bonus! It is open to licensed centers as well as DWS-approved Family, Friend and Neighbor providers. The list of staff that may qualify includes teachers, cooks, custodians, owners, directors, and others. Those interested must register with the Office of Child Care. Applications are due by July 31st. More information here.

 

House Passage of Abortion Access Bills

On July 15, 2022, the U.S. House of Representatives passed two bills that will protect the right to abortion access: the Women’s Health Protection Act of 2022 (H.R. 8296) and the Ensuring Access to Abortion Act of 2022 (H.R. 8297). Read the press release from the National Network to End Domestic Violence here.

No July Interim Legislative Session

The next Interim Session takes place in August. This month is a great time to get to know your legislator and share what is important to you. Find your senator and representative here

Resources for Trans and Non-Binary Survivors of Intimate Partner Violence

It is imperative that domestic and sexual violence organizations provide trauma-informed services to anyone who needs their services. One of the first steps to providing safe and inclusive services is learning more about various communities.

VAWnet curated an incredible collection of resources for Serving Trans and Non-Binary Survivors of Domestic and Sexual Violence including:

  • Gender Identity Basics and Terminology
  • Living at the Intersections
  • Systemic Barriers to Accessing Services
  • Resources for Survivors
  • Related Organizations

A Pronouns Chart, and more

Learn More. Do More. Race Equity Series Highlights Burning Sissy Valley for QTBIPOC Pride

Burning Sissy Valley knows it takes like minded people coming together to build confidence and see each other living freely to exist as a queer person of color in Salt Lake City. YWCA Utah spoke with En Canada (they/them), co-organizer with @thaBSVE on IG to learn that their main goal is to build community, solidarity, and affect positive change in Utah to make space for those who have been historically marginalized.

Watch the 2-minute video here

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Community Care Block Party

As a member of The Utah Reproductive Roundtable Coalition, we are excited to invite you to the Community Care Block Party. Join us for an evening filled with food, music, dancing, joy, laughter, and collective resistance. More information here.

 

 

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Follow Us On Twitter

Follow @ywcautah and Director of Public Policy, Gabriella Archuleta, on Twitter @_Gabe_Archuleta for political news and LIVE updates during the interim sessions. Watch her recent interview with Fox 13 News about domestic violence resources. Help us reach our goal of 100 followers a month! 

Content by Gabriella Archuleta, Director of Public Policy, YWCA Utah
 

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