The Joyful Heart Foundation – a national organization working to end the backlog of untested sexual assault kits – announced that Connecticut has reached “full reform” of its sexual assault backlog.
This means the state meets each of the organization’s six pillars of reform and now:
1) Counts untested sexual assault kits annually
2) Tests all backlogged kits:
3) Tests newly collected kits swiftly
4) Maintains a sexual assault kit tracking system
5) Gives victims the right to know the location and status of their kit
6) Funds these reforms
Legislative efforts towards ending the backlog gained momentum in 2015, when the Connecticut Commission on the Standardization of the Collection of Evidence in Sexual Assault Investigations collected data from law enforcement agencies across the state and found 1,188 untested kits.
Within the next two years, two federal grants totaling $2.6 million were awarded to help eliminate the backlog of sexual assault evidence kits. By October of 2018, a bill was reformed to mandate the electronic tracking of sexual assault kits.
By October 10, 2019, the Joyful Heart Foundation announced Connecticut had reached full reform through the implementation of these reforms.
You can read Joyful Heart’s full message here