"Rape is Rape" Bill Passage in the Assembly

Dear Neighbors,

Every 68 seconds an American is sexually assaulted, and only 25 out of every 1,000 perpetrators will end up serving a prison sentence. The numbers are startling. As your Assemblymember, I helped pass the ‘rape is rape’ bill to expand New York’s rape statutes and help more survivors seek justice (A.3340). 

Make no mistake, ALL forms of forcible, nonconsensual sexual acts are rape.

Under current law, oral and anal sexual conduct are referred to as ‘criminal sexual acts’ and are not recognized as rape. Not calling these horrific crimes what they are has both legal and emotional consequences for survivors, both invalidating and adding to the trauma they’ve already endured.

This bill would remove the penetration requirement from the state’s rape statutes as well as expand the definition of rape to include oral and anal sexual conduct crimes.

With the passing of this bill, we’ve taken another step forward toward righting this wrong and helping survivors seek the justice they deserve. I’ll always work to ensure that New York is a place where victims are heard and supported, and perpetrators are held accountable under the law.

If you or someone you know needs help, the New York State's Domestic and Sexual Violence Hotline provides free, confidential support 24/7 via call, text, or chat: 800-942-6906 (call), 844-997-2121 (text) or opdv.ny.gov (chat). If you’re looking to find survivor assistance programs in your community, please visit: www.ovs.ny.gov/connect.

As always, my office is here to help. By working together, we can ensure all New Yorkers can lead safe and fulfilling lives.

Anna Kelles, Ph.D.
Assemblymember, 125th A.D.