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IL Bill Could Help Sexual Assault Victims Get Help

A new bill in Illinois could help sexual assault victims have their day in court. This week, Attorney General Lisa Madigan and the Joint Sexual Assault Working Group introduced the bill to require that every police department train officers to handle sex assault cases.

Illinois State Senator Scott Bennett says the goal is for all full and part time officers receive to be trained at least every three years.

Training includes every step, from the 911 call to the rape kit testing

911 operators would also be trained within four years on how to deal with reports of sexual assault. And victims would have the right to check the status of rape kits.

Saint Clair County State's Attorney, Brendan Kelly, is sponsoring the bill. He says it will lead to more victims coming forward to report, which will then lead to more prosecutions. But more importantly, Kelly says it will help victims begin the healing process.

If victims see someone cares, they'll step forward

The sexual assault bill has not yet reached the Illinois House or Senate.

Two years ago, voters approved the Illinois Crime Victims' Rights amendment. It gives  victims the right to be free from harassment, obtain all records from their case, and be given advance notice about court hearings.