Manny Waks speaking at the New York State Legislature press conference regarding their statute of limitations
3 May 2016
- Thank you to Assemblywoman Markey and her team, and to the many others who have been advocating for these much-needed changes over the years.
- We’re pleased to represent a broad and strong coalition of over a dozen Jewish organisations, and over 150 Jewish leaders and rabbis who are demanding the elimination of the statute of limitations (full list is available on the Kol v’Oz website).
- It’s important to recount some of the basic statistics and facts:
- Around 1 in 5 children are sexually abused; that’s 20% of the population – that’s around 4 million in NY State.
- The vast majority of victims never disclose their abuse.
- The courageous few who do, it takes them over 20 years on average to disclose.
- These highlight the profound and long-term impact of child sexual abuse.
- There are unique issues within the Jewish community – e.g.:
- A more closed community, which increases risks from several perspective.
- Outdated religious rulings regarding Mesira (applicable when antisemitism was rife).
- Permission from a rabbi prior to reporting.
- It’s time we put the interests and welfare of the victims and survivors ahead of the interests and welfare of the perpetrators and their enablers.
- This is not only about justice for victims and survivors; it’s also about holding perpetrators and their enablers to account so that the public will be able to protect their children.
- There needs to be no statute of limitations whatsoever for both criminal and civil cases.
- There should also be an opportunity for past victims to pursue civil cases against their abusers and their enablers.
- As originally from Australia, I’m proud to say there no statute of limitations there, which assisted me and my schoolmates in attaining justice.
- I’d like to hand it over to my friend and colleague Mark Appel, who has been instrumental in this ongoing campaign, to eliminate the statute of limitations.