Washington D.C., Mar 26, 2021 / 07:17 am
The Diocese of Providence is opposing a bill that would allow survivors of child sex abuse to sue institutions which they claim enabled their abuse.
In 2019, Rhode Island passed “Annie’s Law,” which extended the statute of limitations in child sex abuse cases up to 35 years after the survivor’s 18th birthday. The law also allowed for adults to sue up to seven years after they re-discovered childhood sexual abuse, such as through therapy sessions.
Judge Netti Vogel ruled in October 2020 that the law did not include institutions as responsible for abuse. Thus, after three men who claimed abuse by priests sued the Diocese of Providence, Judge Vogel threw out the lawsuits.
The sponsor of “Annie’s Law” has now proposed an amendment allowing survivors to sue not only the perpetrators of their abuse, but also the institutions they believe enabled the abuse. Bill H5725 was introduced by Rep. Carol Hagan McEntee (D) on Feb. 24.