Mariska Hargitay discusses the heartbreaking backlog of rape kits during DNC appearance

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Mariska Hargitay discusses the heartbreaking backlog of rape kits during DNC appearance

Mariska Hargitay shows her support for Joe Biden as she discusses the heartbreaking backlog of rape kits in powerful DNC speechBy Chri

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Mariska Hargitay shows her support for Joe Biden as she discusses the heartbreaking backlog of rape kits in powerful DNC speech

Mariska Hargitay will be casting a vote for Joe Biden after working alongside him to end the backlog of rape kits.

Hargitay, who has been playing detective Olivia Benson on Law & Order SVU for more than 20 years, revealed she was ‘shocked’ to learn how many adults and children were victims of sexual assault when doing research for her role.

During her appearance at the Democratic National Convention on Wednesday, Hargitay, 56, said she would be voting for the former Vice President after seeing him work ‘tirelessly’ to end the backlog of rape tests.

'The Vice President has worked tirelessly by our side': Mariska Hargitay will be casting a vote for Joe Biden after working alongside him to end the backlog of rape kits

‘The Vice President has worked tirelessly by our side’: Mariska Hargitay will be casting a vote for Joe Biden after working alongside him to end the backlog of rape kits

Appearing on camera in a black blouse with her hair styled into sleek waves, Hargitay said: ‘When I started doing research to play detective Olivia Benson on Law And Order SVU order 20 years ago, I was shocked to find out how many people including children experience physical or sexual abuse.

‘The statistics fueled my resolve and I committed myself to the movement to end this violence.’

Mariska founded the Joyful Heart Foundation in 2004, which aims to support the healing of survivors and alter society’s response to sexual assault.   

‘I created the Joyful Heart Foundation to help survivors heal and to change the way our society responds to sexual violence,’ she said.

'The statistics fueled my resolve': Mariska founded the Joyful Heart Foundation in 2004 to help survivors of sexual assault

‘The statistics fueled my resolve’: Mariska founded the Joyful Heart Foundation in 2004 to help survivors of sexual assault 

For the children: Mariska stated the powerful reason she would be voting for Biden

For the children: Mariska stated the powerful reason she would be voting for Biden

‘The Vice President has worked tirelessly by our side to end the backlog of hundreds of thousands of untested rape kits. And our work will continue because testing kits not only makes our country safer, but it sends a vital message to survivors that what happened to them matters.’

Mariska stated the powerful reason she would be voting for Biden.

‘I’m voting for Joe Biden for my daughter, for my sons, for all of our children,’ she said.

'It sends a vital message to survivors': Hargitay discussed the imperative of getting rape kits tested

‘It sends a vital message to survivors’: Hargitay discussed the imperative of getting rape kits tested

Running for president: Biden is the Democratic party's nominee for president

Running for president: Biden is the Democratic party’s nominee for president 

Mariska has been heavily involved in supporting the victims of sexual assault, child abuse, and domestic violence.

In 2010 the Joyful Heart Foundation launched the End the Backlog initiative, which aims to ‘end this injustice by identifying the extent of the nation’s backlog and best practices for eliminating it; expanding the national dialogue on rape kit testing through increased public awareness; sharing groundbreaking research; engaging communities and government agencies and officials; and advocating for comprehensive rape kit reform legislation and policies based on our six pillars of reform,’ according to its site.

The rape kit backlog was the focus of Mariska’s 2017 documentary I Am Evidence, which won an Emmy for Best Documentary.   

Lights, camera, action: Hargitay has been playing Olivia Benson on Law & Order: SVU for over 20 years

Lights, camera, action: Hargitay has been playing Olivia Benson on Law & Order: SVU for over 20 years  

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