Believe survivors has always meant that people who come forward with allegations of sexual violence deserve the presumption of truth, and that their allegations should be heard and respected, not ignored or dismissed. Sexual violence is an epidemic in our country. We owe survivors a process where they are treated fairly, in a trusted system.
Tara Reade’s allegations are credible and she deserves all of the above. We are glad that Joe Biden decided to address this matter directly himself. It is important that those who seek elected leadership in this country not only support policies and practices that put the needs of survivors first, but that they meaningfully demonstrate moral authority while doing so. We hope to see the Vice President engage in this process with transparency, empathy and care.
This is all made especially painful because of what is at stake in this election.
Donald Trump has gutted programs that fund rape crisis centers, domestic violence shelters and legal services that serve survivors of violence. Trump has preyed on immigrant women seeking protection from domestic violence at courthouses to deport them. Trump has cut programs aimed at ending rape on campus.
And of course, Donald Trump has himself been accused of sexual assault and harassment by more than a dozen women, has bragged about committing sexual assault on tape, and has never been held accountable for his actions. To this day Trump continues to denigrate, demean, and dehumanize women.
Joe Biden authored and championed the Violence Against Women Act and has worked to expand it at every turn over the last 30 years. That program has helped train well over 500,000 law enforcement officers, prosecutors, and judges, funds countless services for survivors including shelters and hotlines, and since it was passed it has helped reduce partner violence by almost 67%. Joe Biden has also led and championed programs aimed at ending the epidemic of campus sexual assault and supporting survivors of assault.
And for the health, safety and well-being of all, but particularly women, Donald Trump must be a one-term President. We continue to be 100% committed to making sure that happens.
The post Our Statement on Tara Reade’s Allegations Against Vice President Biden appeared first on MoveOn.Org | Democracy In Action.