July 15th, 2019 (New York). Zero Abuse Project CEO Jeffrey R. Dion today stressed the role of New York’s new Child Victims Act in helping to keep children safe from sexual abuse and ensuring survivors can seek justice in light of the recent arrest of Jeffrey Epstein on charges of sex trafficking.
“We applaud the New York State Assembly and Governor Cuomo for passing the New York Child Victims Act, or CVA, in their continued effort to stop child sexual abuse, particularly with the recent arrest of disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein, making him the latest example of a powerful man held accountable for his awful sex crimes against children. New Yorkers and people around the world are learning more every day about the systemic abuse Epstein carried out, in Manhattan and beyond, including forcing girls as young as 14 to have sex with him as part of a trafficking ring.
“While much of this abuse happened decades ago, survivors of child sex abuse in New York have new rights with the passage of the CVA last session, which increases the statute of limitations – the time where someone harmed can bring a case against their abuser – for sex crimes against children. It will also open a one-year window – starting in one month – where survivors can bring a civil case no matter when the abuse occurred. At least one of Epstein’s victims has already announced that she will be bringing a lawsuit under the CVA. With more of Epstein’s victims coming forward every day, and with some experts estimating that over 150 could eventually come forward, more are sure to follow.
“But it’s important to remember that there are more powerful predatorslike Epstein out there, and some are protected by influential institutions with an incentive to make sure that their crimes never see the light of day. New York’s CVA will allow survivors to seek justice not only against their abusers, but any institutions that covered up or otherwise hid their abuse.
“Child predators and the institutions who harbor them should know that their days of operating comfortably in the shadows are over, no matter how long ago the abuse took place, or how much money, fame, or influence an individual or institution may possess. Anyone who sexually abuses or has abused a child across New York state will face justice.”
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