What’s done in the dark will be Known in the light
Welcome to Truth in the Shadow, a production brought to you by
Peggy Simmons & Tracey Izatt
Lindsey Baum was 10 years old when she went missing from the small town of McCleary Washington on June 26, 2009.
Partial remains were found 175 miles away on a remote mountain range on the east side of Washington state. In 2018, the FBI confirmed the DNA to belong to Lindsey.
To this day, her case remains unsolved.
Advocacy and making a difference, Leah’s episode will be up soon! Here is an introduction.
My name is Leah Griffin and I am running for State Representative in the 34th Legislative District. I currently work as a school librarian, and so I know the importance of telling stories in creating real change. The work Truth in the Shadow has done over the years displays the power of storytelling, and I am running for office because I want to tell the stories of my neighbors at the state level to create evidence-based solutions to the problems we face.
My story is that in 2014, I was raped by a man in my neighborhood and entered into a series of broken systems. I encountered a broken justice, public safety, and healthcare system. Over the past eight years, I’ve passed multiple laws to reform systems which failed me. I lead the Democratic Party on the Approve R90 campaign to ensure access to high quality, inclusive sexual health education. I worked on the coalition behind the Keep Our Care Act to provide oversight to religiously affiliated hospital mergers which seek to deny abortion and trans healthcare. While representing survivors on the Sexual Assault Forensic Examination (SAFE) Task Force, I worked across the aisle and with a variety of stakeholders to pass bills that require rape kits to be tested, tracked, and stored. By the end of this year, the entire 10,000 rape kit backlog will be tested. We redefined rape in the 3rd degree to hold more rapists accountable and required training in trauma informed interviewing techniques for police investigators, and developed new protocols for hospitals. I also worked with Senator Murray and her staff on the Survivors’ Access to Supportive Care Act to increase access to sexual assault nurse examiners in hospitals nationwide. In March of 2022, my federal law was passed, allocating $150 million to train sexual assault nurse examiners.
I’ve worked to change the ending of my story and I’m running because I want my neighbors to have that experience as well. One of the biggest priorities within my campaign in public safety, and Truth in the Shadow has helped to tell the stories of some of the most drastic failures of our public safety system when it comes to the treatment and care of survivors. Our current approach to public safety both fails to hold perpetrators of crime accountable and fails to help victims of crime. I had to plead with the police and other authorities to even investigate my assault. In the legislature, I will build off my and many others’ work to create a more modern, effective criminal justice and public safety system which centers accountability and rehabilitation and combats the systemic racism within its institutions. For imprisonment to be effective, it must return people to the community who are better than when they went in. That means it must provide access to behavioral health and job training services, as well as access to social support systems. Far too often, survivors of crimes are lost in the process and lack the support they need. I want to create systems that provide survivors with access to emotional and supportive healing so that they can move past their experience and be made whole. Everyone across our state deserves access to behavioral healthcare and a criminal justice system which works to better our communities and support survivors.
I look forward to continuing to work on behalf of my neighbors and communities to create real change for Washingtonians. Please reach out to me if you would like to get further involved in my campaign, you can read more about my story and priorities on my website here: www.voteleahgriffin.com and can reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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