WE HAVE NO OTHER OPTIONS TO SEEK JUSTICE - Pennsylvania Survivor Weighs In!
January 10, 2022
By Debbie Warren
The Christian school Science teacher and upstanding member of our school’s Baptist church in Philadelphia sexually abused me and raped me as a 9, 10. And 11-year-old child --obviously failed me.
The church and school leaders who hid my abuse swept it under the rug and spiritually abused our family, failing me as a child. The same Christian school/Church leaders who were forced to answer and acknowledge what was allowed to happen to me in the last 10 years, failed me.
The leaders of the House and Senate of Pennsylvania have repeatedly failed me for the last decade by not passing important legislation that would give me justice. Just a couple of years ago, the Department of State failed me of their disorganization of filing the correct paperwork to get our Constitutional amendment advertised to the people of the Commonwealth. Last night, I was failed again as the drama unfolded in the Capitol in the special session called to begin the passage of our Constitutional amendment for the second time.
I have made dozens of trips for a decade from Florida where I live to Harrisburg to try and help move the needle toward victims. But it’s not just me. There are thousands of us who have the same story. We have suffered the same abuse over and over. So many of us have pounded the pavement, halls, and doors of the Capitol building in Harrisburg for years. We pass the dozens and dozens of members of the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference and Insurance federation in the hallways making their way out of the same offices fighting any change in the Statute of Limitations. The lobbyists fight against survivors in every way towards our seeking any justice.
The law in the United States only gives us 2 ways to seek justice.
1. We put our perpetrators in jail,
2. We take their money.
WE HAVE NO OTHER OPTIONS TO SEEK JUSTICE
The leaders of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania have chopped both hands off and burned them to ashes. Many of our Statutes of Limitations expired before we even finished puberty! They are antiquated and unfair. The laws failed me as a child, and then the justice system turned around decades later and failed me as an adult.
My abuser is still free to go to YOUR church. YOUR kid's program. YOUR after-church Sunday dinner at your house. YOUR child’s little league. He has no background. So go ahead and do a background check. Since I have come forward and been vocal on social media, more victims have come forward to me from the same pedophile who abused me. This SOL reform would allow me to name him, name the people who hid this abuse, and protect children from him. There are thousands of sexual abusers and pedophiles all over the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania that are being protected and nurtured all because the leaders of Pennsylvania put money, politics, squabbles, in-house competition, and egos before doing what is RIGHT.
Giving victims and survivors of childhood sexual abuse JUSTICE is what is RIGHT and GOOD. Right now, these leaders are making history and will be remembered in our History books for years ago as people who stood on the wrong side of History.
When we know better - we DO better. Clearly, we haven’t learned from the past and from other states who have changed their antiquated Statute of Limitations.
While we wait….yet again, we enable MORE harm done, MORE abuse, and MORE children’s lives ruined by sexual abuse, We are destroying lives as we speak because the Legislatures of Pennsylvania can’t stop playing games with one another and put their egos over the protection of children.
Get it together! PLEASE. Pass this legislation. Do the right thing. We already lost victims this year who couldn’t fight or wait anymore…We should not have to wait several more years…. again.
Don’t fail us yet again….