When the government removes someone’s freedom, it takes on the absolute responsibility to keep that person safe from sexual abuse. Last month, the vast majority of states took a huge step toward upholding this core duty.
On May 15, 43 governors — 22 Republicans and 21 Democrats — affirmed their state’s commitment to putting in place national standards to stop prisoner rape. These standards consist of basic, commonsense measures that can be fully implemented without undue burden or cost. Most importantly, they have the potential to save lives.
What about the rest of the country? Shamefully,
seven six states are refusing to comply with the standards: Arizona, Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Nebraska, Texas, and Utah.* This means that the hundreds of thousands of prisoners in these states won’t get the same protection from sexual abuse as prisoners in the other 43 states.
TAKE ACTION: CALL YOUR GOVERNOR
If you live in one of the seven states that is rejecting PREA, take a moment now to call your governor to express your outrage. Tell them to reverse this shameful decision and stand up for the rights of inmates.
Governor Janice Brewer
Phoenix Office: (602) 542-4331
Tuscon Office: (520) 628-6580
Governor Rick Scott
Governor C.L. Otter
Governor Mike Pence
Governor Rick Perry
Governor Gary Herbert
*While it initially appeared that Nebraska had rejected the PREA standards, Governor Heineman clarified with Attorney General Holder that he had meant to offer an assurance of ongoing full implementation. The DOJ accepted that clarification.