Remember Ariel Castro? He held 3 women captive for 10 years in his Ohio home. He repeatedly assaulted them, and one woman became pregnant and had a daughter as a result of the rapes.
But here’s a piece of the story that didn’t make headlines: Castro could have sued the mother for visitation rights even though he is a known rapist. Why? Because Ohio is one of 31 states that allow rapists to sue for custody and visitation rights.
No survivor should have to worry that her attacker is going to sue her if she becomes pregnant and has a child because of the rape. No one should have to spend a lifetime tethered to their rapist, especially if it means watching a violent offender raise your child. But this is a potential reality for the 32,000 women who become pregnant from rape each year.
In Ohio, State Senator Nina Turner has introduced a bill that will help protect these women, and passing it could tip off a wave of similar bills in other states. Right now, Turner’s bill is stuck in committee, and it needs a bright national spotlight to pass.
Will you sign the petition to Criminal Justice Committee Chairman John Eklund demanding he push the Protect Rape Survivors bill forward?