Yesterday I reported that New York City was charging some homeless people to stay in shelters. Today I've learned that the state of Texas is charging women for rape kits.
Remember shortly after Sarah Palin was announced as the Republican Party's candidate for vice president? The story broke that, when she was mayor of Wasilla, Alaska the police were charging rape victims for the procedure used to determine the veracity of their claims. It cause a political stink. Whether she was responsible for the policy or not, it at least raised awareness and public indignation.
But that was a tiny town in Alaska. Now, the story breaks that the second largest state in the Union is doing likewise.
The cost to the hospitals is, we are told, about $1,800 per patient. But it is also being reported that the state has a victim's compensation fund that could cover this cost.
When a woman is sexually assaulted, we owe it to her to handle her case with a degree of dignity. The days of trying to make her ashamed for what happened are, hopefully, long gone.
Texas, and other areas of the nation that may be charging for rape kits, need to re-evaluate their policies and take on the responsibility of paying for the kits, just as they pay for collecting any other forensic evidence when investigating a crime.