STAND. COM. REP. NO. 831
RE: S.B. No. 1035
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Thirtieth State Legislature
Regular Session of 2019
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Judiciary, to which was referred S.B. No. 1035 entitled:
"A BILL FOR AN ACT RELATING TO SEXUAL VIOLENCE,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to extend the amount of time that a victim of child sexual abuse can bring a civil cause of action.
Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Hawai‘i State Commission on the Status of Women, LGBT Caucus of the Democratic Party of Hawaii, Rainbow Family 808, AAUW of Hawaii, Sex Abuse Treatment Center, O‘ahu County Committee on Legislative Priorities of the Democratic Party of Hawai‘i, Save Medicaid Hawaii, and ten individuals. Your Committee received testimony in opposition to this measure from the National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies.
Your Committee finds that in the United States, one in five girls and one in twenty boys is a victim of child sexual abuse and studies show that between sixty and eighty percent of survivors withhold disclosure. Your Committee further finds that of those who delay disclosure until adulthood, the average delay has been found to be approximately twenty years, with some survivors delaying up to fifty years. Your Committee additionally finds that there are many reasons that child victims delay disclosing sexual abuse, including the particular stage of cognitive development, limited capacity to understand what happened, confusion about their feelings, limited ability to express complaints, and fear of retaliation or harmful impacts on their family or community. Your Committee also finds that the victims of child sexual abuse should be able to seek justice through the courts without being confined to a set window of opportunity.
Accordingly, your Committee has amended this measure by repealing the civil statute of limitations for child sexual abuse.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Judiciary that is attached to this report, your Committee is in accord with the intent and purpose of S.B. No. 1035, as amended herein, and recommends that it pass Second Reading in the form attached hereto as S.B. No. 1035, S.D. 1, and be placed on the calendar for Third Reading.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Judiciary,
KARL RHOADS, Chair