FSA is working with federal legislators to establish a national standard for statute of limitations in cases of child sexual abuse.
2020: Plans are underway to introduce a bill in the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate. Representative Gwen Moore (D-WI) and Senator Kirstin Gillibrand (D-NY) will each lead the charge as primary sponsors in their respective houses.
The bill seeks to encourage 1) statute of limitations (SOL) reform for child sexual abuse and 2) reduction of rape kit backlog at the state level by providing federal monies for those states that:
- have no criminal SOL for child sexual abuse AND
- are actively working to reduce rape kit inventory/backlog
If passed, a State would be awarded a five percent increase of the amount that would otherwise be awarded under section 2007 of the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 21 1968 (34 U.S.C. 10446). The five percent increase continues for five consecutive fiscal years.
On December 10, 2015, Senator Harry Reid [D-NV] introduced bill S.2397 and was referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee. This bill, S.2397, amends the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act to authorize the Secretary of Health and Human Services to make grants to States that extend or eliminate unexpired statutes of limitation applicable to laws involving child sexual abuse.
These grants are intended for developing, establishing and operating programs to improve:
- Investigation – the assessment and investigation of suspected child abuse cases, in a manner that limits additional trauma to the child and the child’s family;
- Prosecution – the investigation and prosecution of cases of child sexual abuse; and
- Protection – the assessment and investigation of cases involving children with disabilities or serious health-related problems who are suspected victims of child sexual abuse.
YOUR VOICE MATTERS!
S.2397 pushes for states to seriously analyze their SOL laws and encourages them to either make massive changes or remove the statutes entirely. Contact your Senator TODAY to affirm your commitment and support of S.2397 to protect children from sexual abuse.