Victims' Rights Caucus

Speeches

Mr. Speaker, they are America's angels abroad. They are ambassadors for America, and they are good folks that represent everything that is right about our country. They are the Peace Corps volunteers. And this is the 50th year of the Peace Corps. These are the most wonderful people I think I've ever met.

But there's a problem in the Peace Corps because many times these volunteers go overseas, they help out other countries, but they become victims of crime and victims of sexual assault. In fact, in 2009 there were 122 of them that were victims of sexual assault by predators in foreign countries.

And the problem is there's not much compassion, not much concern, and not much care with the Peace Corps about the plight of these victims according to the victims who testified today.

But those things are changing. Director Williams is committed to making the Peace Corps a safe place for our volunteers overseas. We're going to work with him and these victims to promote legislation so that we will have a protocol that is the law so that they are treated better.

We are the greatest human rights Nation in the world. We promote human rights, but human rights need to also apply to victims in the Peace Corps who are sexually assaulted overseas.

And that's just the way it is.