WATCH: 4 female NY lawmakers speak out as survivors of sexual abuse, encourage others to come forward

Andrew Weber
August 14, 2019 - 10:49 am

NEW YORK (1010 WINS) — Four female New York state lawmakers spoke out as survivors of sexual abuse on Tuesday and showed off a video encouraging other survivors to come forward.

Assemblywoman Catalina Cruz, state Senator Alessandra Biaggi, Assemblywoman Rodneyse Bichotte, and Assemblywoman Yuh Line Niou, all Democrats, told their stories in the video.

“I knew if I told someone, they would say it’s my fault,” said Bichotte. 

“I thought I was going to die without ever having spoken about the abuse that happened to me,” Biaggi said. “This is a major step towards ending a culture of silence and building a new set of rules that is trauma-informed and puts survivors first.”

The video is part of a campaign organized by victim advocacy group Safe Horizons around the opening of a one-year window in which victims of child sexual abuse can file suit for damages.

Niou said in the video, “When you’ve been sexually abused as a child, it can take years or even decades to process what happened.”

“I went through years of guilt thinking that I must have done something to deserve that,” said Cruz.

The one-time only window opens Wednesday as part of the Child Victims Act and allows victims of any age to file against either alleged abusers or negligent institutions no matter how long ago the abuse happened.

The window closes Aug. 13, 2020.

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