The Kate Puzey Peace Corps Volunteer Protection Act of 2011 Signed into Law by President Obama

President Obama signed the Kate Puzey Peace Corps Volunteer Act into law on November 21st. RAINN has been working with the Peace Corps since March of 2011 to help the organization develop stronger mechanisms to address instances of abuse and assault, which some volunteers have experienced during their stints abroad. The collaboration culminated in the development of The Kate Puzey Peace Corps Volunteer Protection Act of 2011 - named for the 24-year-old woman who was murdered while volunteering with the organization in 2009. The bill requires further precautionary measures and more comprehensive response protocols in instances of assault or abuse of any of the Peace Corps’ 9,095 volunteers.

The bill was sponsored by Rep. Ted Poe (R-TX) and Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-GA), who worked closely with RAINN when creating the legislation. “I can’t emphasize enough how critical RAINN was to getting this bill passed,” Rep. Poe said. “From the very beginning stages of drafting, I went to RAINN for instant expertise on some very difficult issues. After I introduced the bill, my colleagues were looking for an expert voice to speak on the bill. RAINN was that voice- respected, credible, and convincing. I don’t know of another organization that can match RAINN’s reputation on the Hill when it comes to sexual assault issues. This bill does not get passed without RAINN.”

Both the Senate and the House of Representatives passed the Kate Puzey Peace Corps Volunteer Act unanimously.

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