The Journey to Jenna’s Law, with Jenna Quinn

Season 3Episode 7May 7, 2021

Jenna Quinn, a survivor of child sexual abuse who became a champion of abuse prevention public policy, joins us to discuss how centering survivors’ experiences can affect policy and how survivors can not only survive but grow and thrive.

Jenna Quinn was one of the first survivors to translate their experience of abuse into child abuse prevention public policy. Jenna was abused by a close friend of the family, someone known through the Christian school she attended. Her mom was a teacher, and her family very supportive, and yet Jenna, like so many others, became vulnerable to ongoing abuse because she didn’t know who, or how, to tell. And her school, like so many other schools, provided no abuse prevention education to kids or to school personnel. The 2009 Jenna’s Law changed that in Texas and became a model for other efforts. Listen in as we explore how centering the experiences of survivors can translate into important policy solutions, and how survivors can not only survive but experience post-traumatic growth that allows them to thrive.

Topics in this episode:

  • Why she spoke up (1:25)
  • Jenna’s Law (8:44)
  • Stigma (12:44)
  • Faith communities and child abuse (15:04)
  • Post-traumatic growth (18:23)
  • What’s next for Jenna (35:44)
  • Advice for CACs (39:45)
  • Next episode (44:53)


Jenna Quinn, M.S., champions the passage of Jenna’s Law at the state and federal level to require K-12 schools to educate students, teachers, and caregivers about how to prevent, recognize, and report child sexual abuse

Jenna Quinn will be the Opening Keynote speaker at our 2021 Leadership Conference on June 7

Children’s Advocacy Center for North Texas (Denton County)

SANE (sexual assault nurse examiner)

Warning signs of child sexual abuse (#ItsYourBusiness)

Darkness to Light has many prevention resources

#ChurchToo (similar hashtags are in use for other religions)

Victor Vieth; see also our earlier interview with him, “Faith, Trauma, and the Problem of Evil” (May 13, 2019)

Post-traumatic growth (PTG), Richard G. Tedeschi, Ph.D., and Lawrence G. Calhoun, Ph.D.

The original study into adverse childhood experiences (ACEs)

A bill to pass the Jenna Quinn Law (S. 734) was introduced in the U.S. Senate on March 11, 2021

The biblical story of Tamar is told in 2 Samuel 13

Transcript to come.