SNAP Applauds as State Representatives in Michigan Introduce Legislation Aimed at Empowering Survivors
State legislators in Michigan have introduced a reform bill aimed at changing the state’s archaic statute of limitations laws so that more survivors will be empowered to come forward, name their abuser, and protect other children and communities. We applaud this effort and hope it receives the bi-partisan support it needs to succeed.
We are grateful to State Reps. Julie Brixie (D-Meridian Township), Nate Shannon (D-Sterling Heights), and Laurie Pohutsky (D-Livonia) for introducing the “Survivors Empowered Bill Package.” We strongly believe that statute of limitations reform is a critical step towards both supporting survivors and helping prevent future cases of sexual abuse. These bills will help update the laws in Michigan, bringing them more in line with science and data about how and when survivors of childhood sexual abuse report what happened to them.
Michigan recently reformed its SOL laws, but only in a very narrow way, tailored to support the survivors of Larry Nassar. We are glad that legislators have chosen to again take up this issue and broaden their reforms to benefit all victims across the state. We applaud this move.
In other states, we have seen reform efforts like this met with furious opposition from institutions like the Roman Catholic Church. We hope that church officials will not use their vast wealth and influence to lobby against this effort in Michigan. Instead of using their power to fight progress, Catholic leaders can instead use their influence for good by encouraging survivors to come forward, make a report to police and prosecutors, and start healing.
CONTACT: Zach Hiner, SNAP Executive Director ([email protected], 517-974-9009)
(SNAP, the Survivors Network, has been providing support for victims of sexual abuse in institutional settings for 30 years. We have more than 25,000 survivors and supporters in our network. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)