DES MOINES, IOWA (July 1, 2021) — Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate announces survivors of assault are now eligible to enroll in the Safe at Home address confidentiality program overseen by his office. Previously, participants included survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence, trafficking, and stalking. The expansion of the program is part of a new law signed by Governor Kim Reynolds on June 17.
“We want all Iowans to be safe and feel protected in their own homes, especially those who have already endured a violent crime,” Sec Pate said. “By having their address hidden, survivors don’t have to worry about constantly looking over their shoulder. It makes it a lot harder for their abuser to find them.”
Iowa’s Safe at Home program began in January of 2016 and currently includes more than 675 participants across more than 60 counties. Someone enrolled in Safe at Home receives a legal-substitute address that can be utilized on public and private records, in place of their actual address. Additionally, their mail is forwarded by Safe at Home. Confidential voter-registration and absentee-balloting is provided. The program provides an extra layer of security for survivors at no cost to them.
Statistics show violent crimes in Iowa occur 266.6 times per every 100,000 residents of the state. Iowa has the thirteenth-lowest rate in the country. Nationally, the average is 366.7 incidents per 100,000 residents.
“I believe a national address confidentiality system for survivors of violence would be a great benefit for people across the country,” Sec Pate said. “Having it in place in every state would allow participants to move to another state without concern of their records, including voter registration, becoming public. It helps people participate in elections without fear of being tracked by someone who has harmed them.”