Dec. 09, 2022
– As the 2023-24 Legislative Session opens in Harrisburg, Rep. Jim Gregory (R-Blair) is seeking support among his colleagues for creating a two-year window of time in which survivors of childhood sexual abuse could sue their attacker, even if the statute of limitations has already expired for their lawsuits.
For several years, Gregory, joined by Rep. Mark Rozzi (D-Berks), has worked on victims’ rights legislation commonly known as the Hidden Predator Act. Gregory and Rozzi have been championing reforms in Pennsylvania since a 2018 grand jury report revealed widespread abuse by Catholic priests living and working in the state.
In 2021, the two-year window was headed to ballots for voters to consider as a potential constitutional amendment. However, disastrous failures by the Department of State left that matter off ballots, giving Gregory and Rozzi the unfortunate task of starting their process again.
Gregory intends to soon reintroduce a joint resolution that could create a two-year window if OK’d by voters. He has circulated a co-sponsorship memo to obtain bipartisan support of this measure.
“As the new session begins, I’m again fighting for abuse victims who have had to wait two additional years to have their opportunity to face their abusers – and institutions that shielded the abusers – in a court of law,” Gregory said. “I’m seeking the support of the House one more time to pass this quickly and have the question placed on the May 16 primary ballot to end the many years the victims have already waited.”