By Bob Katzen
The House approved and sent to the Senate a proposal that would create a task force on sexual assault counselors to make recommendations on establishing statewide certification and updating training standards for sexual assault counselors.
“The standards for training and certification haven’t been updated in decades and sexual violence survivor serving organizations are interested in creating a consensus around updating those standards through this task force before filing new legislation,” said co-sponsor Rep. Natalie Higgins (D-Leominster) … “I worked and volunteered as a sexual violence counselor for nearly a decade across two different organizations in two counties and support the efforts to reconsider the minimum standards of training.”
“While we are proud to have systems in place to provide services to victims of sexual assault here in Massachusetts, we must make sure that those who victims turn to at their most vulnerable moments are properly trained and qualified for the sensitive work they do,” said co-sponsor Sen. Michael Moore (D-Millbury). “This legislation will ensure that all rape crisis centers and sexual assault counsellors will meet the same strict standards, regardless of how their service is provided.”