Editorial: Find Better Ways to Prevent Sexual Abuse

An editorial by LRANY Executive Director, Tom Stebbins, was published in the Times Union.  This piece highlights the unintended consequences of legislation seeking justice for victims of sexual abuse.  The bill would open a one year window in which the civil statute of limitations would be eliminated for all cases of sexual abuse, ever, against private institutions.

“In the March 5 editorial, “Sexual abuse, political abuse,” the Times Union asks, “What would be unreasonable about establishing a one-year window for victims to sue their alleged abusers, regardless of when they say it happened?”

It is a reasonable question, but there are a great many reasons that the statute of limitations has stood the test of time for hundreds of years of jurisprudence.

The first, and most obvious, is that memories fade and witnesses die. When California opened a one-year window for this type of litigation, 336 of more than 800 claims filed were against dead people”.

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