September 9, 2016
Contact: Amy Lebowitz, Camino PR

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Unanimous passage of Survivor’s Bill of Rights signals sea change in ending rape culture

Lawmakers must continue listening to young people, survivors

NEW YORK — U.S. House Republicans and Democrats voted unanimously Tuesday to approve the Survivor’s Bill of Rights, legislation that will support and ensure protections for survivors of sexual assault. Phoebe Schreiner, U.S. country director of global human rights group Breakthrough, released the following statement in response:

“The unanimous vote against sexual assault by Congress signals a positive, nascent shift in awareness of and demand for attention to the rights of survivors. The contrast to similar efforts, such as the Violence Against Women Act, which took four years to pass and then faced formidable hurdles for renewal, demonstrates that the demand to change our culture of rape has reached critical strength.  

“The unanimous and uncontroversial passage of Survivor’s Bill of Rights follows a sea change in acknowledgment that rape culture must be addressed head-on.

“By amplifying the voices of college students and paying attention to the issue of campus sexual assault, we as a culture have succeeded in raising the profile of this issue in mainstream conversations. Let’s continue to include young people’s voices in the fight to end rape culture and ramp up societal demand for adequate responses to sexual assault.”


Breakthrough is a global human rights organization working to make violence and discrimination against women and girls unacceptable. Our cutting-edge multimedia campaigns, community mobilization, agenda-setting and leadership training equip men and women worldwide to challenge the status quo and take bold action for the dignity, equality and justice of all.