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Protect Sexual Abuse Victims by Supporting the Child Victim’s Act

November 14, 2011
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Protect Sexual Abuse Victims by Supporting the Child Victim’s Act

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From Force Change

Target: United States Senate

Goal: Protect sexual abuse victims by extending the age of limitation to 28, allowing victims of sexual abuse 5 more years to address their trauma and face their predators

Even though one in five of all children will be sexually abused before their eighteenth birthday, the prosecution of this horrendous crime remains too lax in the United States. Right now in many states, the prosecution of child sexual abuse is capped at 23 years old, which is common in much of the country. After surviving such trauma, many victims are not comfortable coming forth with their claims until they are well into adulthood, at which time the current limitation has often expired. As a result, sexual predators have a greater opportunity to “run out the clock” while the victim and their family may suffer in silence for years. It is estimated that only 10% of child sexual abuses are reported to the authorities.

The Child Victim’s Act is a proposed bill that aims to extend the age of limitation to 28, allowing victims of sexual abuse 5 more years to address their trauma and allowing more time to gain the strength and courage to face their predators. Additionally, the act creates a one-year, one time suspension of the current statute of limitations, a period during which the adult survivors of child sexual abuse may sue their abuser as well as anyone who protected their abuser. This would be allowed even if the statute of limitations has already expired.

Oftentimes, sexual predators do not commit just one crime against a single child – on average, a sexual predator commits over 300 acts on over 100 children in a lifetime. Given that the rate of reported sexual abuse is so low, we can only imagine the number of sexual predators that remain free and the number of children continually in danger. Because childhood sexual abuse is so often kept a secret, generally it is only when victims are well into adulthood that they have the strength and the wherewithal to break their silence. The Child Victims Act aims to offer justice to those denied their time in court due to the current short statute of limitations as well as give hope and relief to those unable to go to court in previous years. California and Delaware have enacted similar laws and it is time for the rest of the United States to join as well – sign the petition below and urge your state senators to put sexual predators behind bars and protect the children of America.



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sexual abuse does not go away
no matter what statutes
and laws might say
what was done to the child
walks with them wherever
they go
without a break
as the child grows
the scars on the psyche
sometimes so deep
that the brain puts the
trauma and the memories
to sleep
and when they resurface
what is the now adult to do
say to him/herself
it is over and through?
this course is never run
and it is never, done

Karen Lyons Kalmenson


5 Comments leave one →
  1. karen lyons kalmenson permalink
    November 14, 2011 8:16 pm

    sexual abuse does not go away
    no matter what statutes
    and laws might say
    what was done to the child
    walks with them wherever
    they go
    without a break
    as the child grows
    the scars on the psyche
    sometimes so deep
    that the brain puts the
    trauma and the memories
    to sleep
    and when they resurface
    what is the now adult to do
    say to him/herself
    it is over and through?
    this course is never run
    and it is never, done

  2. Michael Truels permalink
    July 22, 2012 10:11 pm

    not all will get their day in a court of justice for real offenses, some will. This is for all those victims and the intimidating threats placed upon them against reporting or talking. They will eventually have someone to face.

Trackbacks

  1. One in Three Girls Under 18 Are Abused: Most Won’t Disclose | DCKidsNews
  2. How Could You See a Child Being Sexually Abused and Not Intervene? | Northern Barbarians's Blog
  3. Face of Sexual Abuse « MARCJAN'S BLOG

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