02062019CM0322RSPRINGFIELD – Childhood sexual abuse victims would be reaffirmed in their right to bring civil charges against their perpetrator and those who fraudulently concealed their crime under a proposal sponsored by State Senator Terry Link (D-Indian Creek) that passed the Senate today.

“Our laws should reflect our values that victims and their rights should be protected,” Link said. “While it is impossible to go back in time and prevent these horrific crimes from occurring, we should be doing everything in our power to seek justice for these individuals.”

Link’s proposal, contained in Senate Bill 1868, reaffirms the ability of victims of childhood sexual abuse cases to bring a civil claim against an abuser or an individual who fraudulently concealed the crime. The legislation builds off a law Link passed in 2013 that eliminated the statute of limitations on bringing civil claims for damages from childhood sexual abuse.

Link introduced the plan after a report issued by former Attorney General Lisa Madigan in December of 2018 revealed accusations of child sexual abuse against nearly 700 Catholic priests throughout Illinois.

Link’s measure would ensure victims are able to recoup civil damages if there is evidence that their perpetrator intentionally tried to conceal the crime.

“Confronting an accuser is often part of the healing process for victims,” Link said. “It is especially important for childhood sexual abuse survivors, who experience extreme traumas that often leave scars for life.”

Senate Bill 1868 passed the Senate this afternoon on a 52-3 vote and will now head to the Illinois House for further debate.

Category: Releases

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