Push to extend abuse-claim limit fails in budget talks

The Daily Star

March 29, 2018

By Joe Mahoney

Advocates for a one-year window to allow child victims of sexual assault to bring civil suits against molesters and employers who enabled abuse said Thursday they are deeply disappointed that the measure was sliced out of state budget negotiations.

Those crusading for the Child Victims Act — legislation that has been opposed by the state’s Roman Catholic bishops, some youth groups and the insurance industry — said they will resume their push in Albany’s post-budget legislative session, which closes in mid-June.

The one-year revival is intended to arm victims with the ability to pursue legal claims even decades after they were molested.

“We’re going to continue our grassroots effort and I think it’s highly likely we’re going to make this happen,” said Bridie Farrell, a Saratoga Springs native and former Olympic speed skater who was molested by an adult male when she was 15.

State Senate Republicans, who control the upper chamber of the statehouse, succeeded in having the measure cut out of the budget legislation submitted in January by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat.

Critics of the measure say it would lead to an evidentiary nightmare for New York’s courts.

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