CHILD SEX ABUSE VICTIMS GROUP SPEAKS OUT FOR STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS BILL

For Immediate Release
May 27, 2009

For More Information
Matt Nees: (503) 780 – 1965
mattn@wintreswishes.org

Beaverton, Ore—Wintre’s Wishes Foundation, an Oregon non-profit dedicated to support of child abuse survivors, today announced its support for House Bill 2827, a measure which would extend the civil statute of limitations for child abuse survivors to sue their abusers.

The bill passed the House of Representatives 60-0 in April, but has bogged down in the Senate Judiciary Committee, chaired by Senator Floyd Prozanski (D – Eugene). 

The bill is set for a public hearing and vote on Thursday, May 28th at 8:00am in Senate Hearing Room 343.

Said Matthew Nees, the father of a seven-year-old sexual abuse victim, and the founder of Wintre’s Wishes Foundation, “We believe this is a common sense bill that will both help survivors of child abuse and will help prevent future child abuse.  We thank Representative Andy Olson for his sponsorship of this bill, and we call on members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, led by Senator Prozanski, to pass this bill.”

Under current Oregon law, victims of child abuse have until age 24 to file a civil law suit, or, until three years from the date they understand that their abuse has caused them injury.  House Bill 2827 extends those periods of time to age 40 with a five year discovery window after that.  “We know that most child abuse survivors never mention their abuse until much later in life, well into their 30’s, 40’s, or 50’s,” said Nees, “and this bill merely recognizes that reality.”

The measure has reportedly bogged down in the Senate because of political pressure from religious groups, including the Catholic Church and Mormon Church, on Senate President Peter Courtney or Chairman Prozanski.  “We call on all senators, especially Senators Courtney and Prozanski, to side with children who have been sexually abused, and not with powerful institutions that would cover up abuse,” said Nees.

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Contact these Legislators and ask them to support passing this bill:

Chairman Floyd Prozanski (D – Eugene)
Capitol Phone: 503-986-1704
Email:sen.floydprozanski@state.or.us

Senate Pres. Peter Courtney (D – Salem)
Capitol Phone: 503-986-1600
Email: sen.petercourtney@state.or.us