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In Iowa, the cost of rape is significantly high

Medical bills, mental health assistance, legal costs, substance abuse— the list can go on and on.

DES MOINES, Iowa — If you need assistance, the Iowa Victim Service Call Center provides 24/7 free and confidential services at 1-800-770-1650, or text "IOWAHELP" to 20121.

Bills pile up for rape victims. 

Medical bills, mental health assistance, legal costs, substance abuse— the list can go on and on.

However, those sexually assaulted are not the only ones paying for it. Taxpayers feel the economic impacts too. 

Especially in Iowa. 

“One-third of the costs associated with sexual abuse falls on taxpayers, not the perpetrators and the organizations that covered up the crime," said Sen. Janet Peterson (D-Des Moines).

Peterson said the legislature slashed the funding for victim services in the state. That's where the Iowa Coalition Against Sexual Assault comes into play.

"Sexual violence doesn't just impact the one person. It doesn't just impact the one victim. It impacts all of us," said Matty Tate-Smith with Iowa CASA. "Iowa paid $5.8 billion towards rape victims costs. So, that cost was almost $1,875 per resident here in Iowa."  

The Centers for Disease Control estimated that each rape victim will have $122,461 of bills associated with the rape.

Sen. Petersen said if Iowa could change the civil statute of limitations taxpayers wouldn't have to pay the bill. 

Tate-Smith explained Iowa CASA helped provide service to 10,424 sexual abuse survivors in 2021, so far.

RELATED: Iowa law eliminating statute of limitations for child sex abuse doesn't go far enough, critics say

RELATED: Twice a Victim | Confidential documents show DMPS denied transfers for alleged victims of rape, assault and bullying

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