Urge New York to Protect Rape Victims

Target: Governor Cuomo, Speaker Silver, and Majority Leaders Skelos & Klein

Goal: To support New York’s “Rape is Rape” bill, which would properly define rape to include all forcible sexual acts.

Under New York law, the current definition of rape does not protect victims of non-vaginal violation. Therefore, rapists receive the less severe “sexual assault” sentence if they violate a victim anally and/or orally. In order to protect victim’s legal rights, we must be pass legislation correcting the definition of rape to include all forced sexual acts.

New York rape victim and elementary school teacher, Lydia Cuomo, was forced into anal and oral sex by a police officer at gun point in 2011. Her rape  case went to trial and although the police office confessed his guilt, he was not convicted of rape. Why? Because state law requires vaginal penetration to occur to be considered rape.

Fortunately, state assembly member Aravella Simotas is coming to the aid of New York citizens. Simotas introduced the “Rape is Rape” bill in the House of Representatives and the Senate. If passed, this bill would correct the legal definition in New York to protect victims of every type of rape in court.

In a February 2011 Daily Mail article, Simotas stated, “Lydia’s story illustrates the heart of what we are trying to accomplish by passing this legislation—it is truly about the victims; more than anything, the law must be responsive to them. Lydia and others who have endured such trauma deserve justice, and it is the goal of this common-sense bill to ensure that rape is always called by its name.”

Sign the below petition to urge Congress to support New York’s “Rape is Rape” bill as proposed by assembly member Aravella Simotas. All victims of rape deserve protection under the law so that they can bring justice to their attackers.

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Dear Governor Cuomo, Speaker Silver, and Majority Leaders Skelos & Klein,

The “Rape is Rape” bill would correct the definition of rape to cover all types of forced sexual violation, including anal and oral assault. Other states, including Tennessee and South Dakota, have already corrected their states’ laws to rightfully expand the definition of rape.

I am urging you to support the “Rape is Rape” bill to protect victims of all forced sexual acts in the state of New York. Victims like Lydia Cuomo deserve equal protection under the law, regardless of how they were unduly violated.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Women’s eNews via Flickr

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74 Signatures

  • Lynn Juozilaitis
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