Silence Undocumented Rape Victims? Don’t Let Rep. Ryan Fattman Get Away With It!
  • Petitioned State Rep. Ryan Fattman

This petition was delivered to:

State Rep. Ryan Fattman

Silence Undocumented Rape Victims? Don’t Let Rep. Ryan Fattman Get Away With It!

    1. Petition by

      New Hope, Inc.

June 2011


Representative Fattman released the following statement today after meeting with representatives of New Hope, Inc.

Republican Legislators Meet with Victim Advocacy Officials

Representative Fattman Clarifies Statement Regarding Undocumented Rape Survivors 

BOSTON - House Minority Leader Bradley H. Jones, Jr. (R-North Reading), Assistant Minority Leader Elizabeth Poirier (R – North Attleboro) and Representative Ryan Fattman (R-Sutton) met yesterday with representatives of New Hope, Inc. including Executive Director Kim Thomas to discuss domestic and sexual violence as well as providing me an opportunity to clarify my position following recent attributions regarding the reporting of rape.

“I was pleased to have had the opportunity to meet with officials from New Hope, Inc.,”said Representative Fattman. “I appreciate the opportunity to clarify that I do, and always will feel compassion towards victims of any crime. Victims of any crime should always feel safe to come forward to both law enforcement officials and other support networks for help, regardless of their gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, immigration status, or any other factor.”

A petition filed by New Hope, the Boston Area Rape Crisis Center (BARCC) and the Rape Crisis Center of Central Massachusetts (RCCCM) sought to obtain clarification of Rep. Fattman’s position on this issue.  After a productive discussion between legislators and victim advocates, all parties involved accept this clarifying statement as an accurate depiction of his beliefs , and have therefore agreed to remove the petition.

“We are thankful to Representative Fattman, Representative Poirier, and House Minority Leader Jones for meeting with us to discuss victims’ rights and advocacy,” said New Hope Executive Director, Kim Thomas adding  “We look forward to working together”

 “The opportunity that we have before us to educate and provide resources to the victims of domestic and sexual violence, and those who advocate on their behalf is invaluable,” said Representative Poirier. “I look forward to the continued progression of legislation relative to furthering the awareness of this issue.”

New Hope, Inc., a non-profit human service agency whose mission is “Ending Domestic and Sexual Violence in Our Community,” with over 30 years of experience providing crisis intervention and prevention services, welcomes the opportunity to work with a bi-partisan group of legislators including Representative Fattman to ensure that our state supports all survivors of violence.

According to Massachusetts State Representative Ryan Fattman, undocumented victims who are raped “should be afraid to come forward” and report their rape because of their immigration status. Fattman reported  the following comments to the Worcester Telegram & Gazette:

"My thought is that if someone is here illegally, they should be afraid to come forward," Mr. Fattman said. "If you do it the right way, you don't have to be concerned about these things," he stated, referring to obtaining legal immigration status.

Representative Fattman's appalling assertion sends a chilling message to all rape survivors that their circumstances could -- and even should -- prohibit them from seeking help. Rape is already the most under-reported crime, in large part because victims are afraid of being put under the microscope if they report their rape.

We call on Representative Fattman to apologize for his comments and ask his colleagues in the Massachusetts State Legislature to hold him accountable for claiming certain individuals who are raped don't deserve help.

We also call on the Massachusetts State Legislature - to publicly denounce Rep. Fattman's comments and send a message that there are never any circumstances in which a victim should be afraid to come forward about being raped.

This action is endorsed by New Hope, Rape Crisis Center of Central MA and Boston Area Rape Crisis Center.

Recent signatures


    1. Reached 4 signatures
    2. Meet the rising star of rape culture politics: MA State Representative Ryan Fattman

    3. Reached 2 signatures
    4. MA State Rep. Fattman Says Rape Survivors Should Fear Reporting Crime

      Newsflash: Massachusetts State Rep. Ryan Fattman believes that rape and abuse survivors ought to be afraid to report their assault, assuming they are undocumented. No really.
      We hear a lot of justifications for the flawed "Secure Communities"...

    5. Reached 50 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • Marcy McCann STRASBURG, VA
      • over 3 years ago

      Representative Fattman must have lived a charmed life with no one in his family being victim to this or other sexual assaults. Otherwise I find it hard to believe he would say such an insensitive thing. Mexicans often are escaping drug cartels to live in a better country. He must not be aware of the conditions that make so many willing to risk suffocating in a truck or being shot in a desert. Then to say they should be scared to come forward when raped? Often they are scared Mr. Fattman. That is often why they come here in the first place.

    • Shandi Penrod COLLINSVILLE, IL
      • over 3 years ago

      Let's ignore the fact that this a is horrible thing to say and think and that NO ONE deserves to be raped. Don't you want to protect the citizens of your state by catching these rapists so they don't harm anyone here legally?

    • Laura Cummings AUBURN, MA
      • over 3 years ago

      There should never be any circumstances in a country as great as the United States where a victim should be afraid to come forward about being raped. Regardless of their immigration status, all people deserve justice.

    • Kate Aldrich NEW BEDFORD, MA
      • over 3 years ago

      Your lack of basic empathy is disgusting and should worry you. I recommend you seek help immediately.

      • over 3 years ago

      get rid of this rape apologist NOW.


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