Statement by Dr. Terry Brooks, executive director of Kentucky Youth Advocates
When adults are held accountable in the court system, kids are safer from abuse. Today’s action by the Senate Judiciary Committee affirms that notion. We applaud the Senate Judiciary Committee for supporting SB 137, which seeks to address abuse and protect future victims by allowing a trustworthy adult to whom a child has disclosed abuse to testify in court about that disclosure.
If a young child has been a victim of abuse, trauma and fear may affect their ability to testify in court. Their fear or inability should not prevent a judge from hearing the most complete information about a child’s experience, which is crucial in reaching an informed decision in child abuse cases. SB 137 would help present that more complete account of a child’s abusive experience to the court. We commend Senator Whitney Westerfield for sponsoring SB 137 and the Senate Judiciary Committee for stepping up to protect children who have experienced abuse.
SB 137 is a priority of the Blueprint for Kentucky’s Children and Kosair Charities’ Face It campaign to end child abuse.
Stay up-to-date on Blueprint for Kentucky’s Children priorities and other bills that are good for kids on our Kentucky General Assembly Bill Tracker.