By Kiera Dunk
Kami was a beautiful 9-month-old baby when her life was changed forever when the man responsible for her safety shook her so violently that she was clinically dead for 23 minutes. Kami survived… BUT due to the trauma, only half her brain remained. Since that day, she has been confined to a wheelchair, nonverbal, requires a feeding tube, has daily seizures, has to take 12 pills a day and may never be able to use the bathroom on her own.
Last year, Kami had to have her fake skull replaced, got sick and almost died AGAIN! While the person responsible roams free with no legal or financial recourse. Our county attorney handed him a deal of 5 years in prison, of which he did not even serve the full time.
Kentucky has among the highest child abuse rate in the nation… We need change!
In Kentucky, child abusers can still visit the child they abused after they get out of prison when they plead down to a lesser sentence, keeping them from registering as an abuser. Reported child abuse incidences passed 20,000 in 2019. That’s about 20 out of every 1,000 children. A little over half of child abuse cases are reported in Kentucky.
House Bill 263 becoming law will help us address these terrible numbers by preventing the state from handing out soft deals to people who harm children under the age of 13. The important consequence of these violent actions MUST BE a B felony, forcing them to register as a violent offender and serve the time they deserve. HB 263, known as Kami’s Law, will do just that.
Kami’s Law, sponsored by House Speaker Osborne and Representative Massey, has passed the Kentucky House unanimously! Now we are off to the Senate.
I could really use some help. If you live in Kentucky, please take the time to call your Senator and ask them to support HB 263. The more constituents that call in, the more support we have in the Senate and the better the chances of getting this much needed bill passed into law!
My name is Kiera Dunk and I am twelve years old. I am a 7th grade student who enjoys advocating and politics, cross country, basketball, track, and swimming. I also enjoy hiking in the Red River Gorge with my Daddy, drawing and hanging out with my best friend.
Stay up-to-date on the progress of HB 263 on our Kentucky General Assembly Bill Tracker.