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New York Domestic Violence Agency Urging NYS Assembly To Pass The Adult Survivors Act

adult survivor
Raven Brink
/
WAER News
Drew Dixon addressing the audience

New York domestic violence agency Safe Horizon is working to pass the Adult Survivors Act, which is modeled after the Child Victims Act. The CVA resulted in more than 10,000 cases being filed after their statute of limitation was over, and the ASA is seeking to do the same for victims over 18 years of age.

Survivor Drew Dixon was allegedly raped by her idol Russel Simons 26 years ago. It took her 22 years to break her silence and says that this act will put time on survivors' side and allow for them to heal.

“I'm sure that I'm not the only black women whose sense of loyalty to their race delayed their decision to come forward," Dixon said.

If passed, the ASA would allow victims to have a look back window of one year, to be able to prove their case in civil court. As the statute of limitations for cases of rape ranges from 5–20 years, and this act allows victims to bring a lawsuit after that time.

Survivor Evelyn Yang was among the more than 200 women who were assaulted by a gynecologist at Columbia University. She says the system routinely fails women, by not acknowledging the time that science suggest it takes to heal before reporting their abuser.

“This should be the priority of the state's first women Governor Kathy Hochul," Yang said. "To turn the page on men abusing their power in New York State.”

The Adult Survivors Act was passed by the New York State Senate last spring but was stalled in the assembly. Safe Horizons is asking for this to be voted on in January. If it is passed, New York will be the second state, after New Jersey, to acknowledge the issue and aid survivors.