A 21-year-old Laramie woman is speaking to lawmakers about her own experience to help victims of sexual assault. Erin Valenti has spoken to the Senate and is slated to speak to the House in the coming months for a bill that would help sexual assault victims in getting protection orders against their perpetrators.

Valenti says there is currently no law in Wyoming for victims of sexual violence to get protection orders against those who perpetrated crimes against them. Valenti, a Laramie High School graduate who recently obtained her Associate’s Degree in Early Childhood Education from Laramie County Community College and is working toward her Bachelor’s Degree, says it is important for victims to feel safe in day-to-day life, and this bill could help them in that endeavor.

She got involved with this bill after an alleged sexual assault against her. After reaching out to SAFE Project in Laramie, Valenti wanted to use her voice to help others in similar situations. Seeing such low statistics of reported sexual assaults and how many perpetrators go unpunished helped fuel the fire for Valenti.

She soon learned of a proposed bill to help in protecting victims, and she immediately knew she wanted to help. Valenti began reaching out and was soon invited to share her story with the Senate. After Valenti shared her story, the bill was unanimously carried over for review by the House.

She will speak to the House twice in January, again sharing her story and giving them the view of a victim.

She says she hopes that her words will reach law makers in a personal way so that other victims can feel safe.

Hear her story and what she is doing to make a difference below.