ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The New York State Senate struck down a bill Wednesday that would have loosened the statute of limitations of child molestation for the 11th year in a row.
“New York has the worst laws on the books anywhere in the country pertaining to the statute of limitations for crimes of child sexual abuse,” Senator and Bill Sponsor Brad Hoylman (D) said.
This year, the bill, called the Child Victims Act came closer than ever to passing. It received support across the aisle in both the Senate and Assembly. It passed in the Assembly for the first time since 2008. The bill died before it hit could the Senate floor.
Right now, victims have until the age of 23 to come forward and file claims, but the bill would have given them something invaluable.
The bill would have given child victims until the age of 28 to file criminal claims, and 50 to file civil claims.
“Most 22-year-olds can’t even figure out how to balance their checkbook or pay their rent on time much less go to court and file a claim,” Hoylman said. “We’re asking too much of our kids.”
Child victim Gary Greenberg did not feel comfortable coming forward about his abuse until later in life.
Greenberg says children carry the emotional trauma from these crimes into adulthood.
“When you’re abused, it murders your soul. That’s how it feels when you’re a child and you’re violated. It stays with you,” Greenberg said.
Governor Cuomo introduced his own version of the Child Victims Act, which closely mirrors the version the Assembly passed. He hopes victims of these crimes might see justice before January.
“I’d like to think that the governor will push his bill. I don’t know what the prospects are for special sessions. You never know, so I remain optimistic.”
Gov. Cuomo says he’s disappointed the Child Victims Act didn’t pass.