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Gov. Wolf Signs Three Bills to Protect Victims of Childhood Sexual Abuse

Berks lawmaker seeks stronger child sex abuse lawsuits bill

(Sep 27, 2016)

HARRISBURG, Pa. - A Pennsylvania lawmaker who has told of his victimization as a child by a Roman Catholic priest in the Diocese of Allentown said he'll keep fighting for legislation to allow onetime-child sexual abuse victims to sue for damages. Read more

 

Lawmaker seeks stronger child sex abuse lawsuits bill

(Sep 27, 2016)

HARRISBURG, Pa. — A Pennsylvania lawmaker who has told of his victimization as a child by a Roman Catholic priest said Tuesday that he will keep fighting for legislation to allow onetime-child sexual abuse victims to sue for damages, despite the measure’s rejection in the Senate as the legislative session winds down. Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, is backed by top House lawmakers, victim advocates and both major party candidates for state attorney general — Republican John Rafferty and Democrat Josh Shapiro — as part of wider legislation to respond to child sexual abuse cover-ups. The provision would revive the ability of people to sue for damages if they are now older than the current legal age limit of 30 to sue. It is opposed by the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference and the Insurance Federation of Pennsylvania, which represents for-profit insurers. Jennifer Storm, the state’s victim advocate, said that the provision is the right thing to do for victims and that she did not want to have to tell age-limited victims, “sorry, today is not your day,” if the Legislature decides against helping them. Read more

 

House takes another whack at controversial child sex abuse bil

(Sep 27, 2016)

House lawmakers are, once again, picking up a bill that would make it easier for victims in child sex abuse cases to sue their abusers. Early this summer, a Senate panel amended the legislation to get rid of its retroactivity clause, which would have allowed victims to take legal action on assaults dating back decades. But advocates now say they want the original version, or nothing. Representative Mark Rozzi, a Berks County Democrat, is both the bill's primary sponsor and a survivor of child sex abuse by a priest. He said the Senate's changes were unacceptable. Read more

 

Rozzi vows to get retroactivity clause back in abuse bill

(Sep 27, 2016)

In April, the state House passed a bill to extend the statute of limitations in child sex abuse cases, which also would have given past victims of abuse more time to file a civil suit. The Senate sent it back without the retroactive clause. Now, a state lawmaker from Berks County is vowing to get the retroactivity back in the proposal. Six of Pennsylvania's eight Catholic dioceses, including the Roman Catholic Diocese of Harrisburg, are now under investigation by the state Attorney General's office for possible clergy sex abuse. The new probes are spurring advocates like Democratic Representative Mark Rozzi of Berks County to push harder for passage of legislation to allow past victims to sue. He says he believes the House will stand united, as it did earlier this year. But if they can't get the measure passed with the retroactive measure included this session, he will introduce the same bill again in January. "I'm not going to sit there, pat myself on the back for half a loaf when we have children in this commonwealth suffering this horrific sexual abuse that goes on," he says. Rozzi says if senators refuse to help past victims, they will have to deal with the consequences from the public. Read more

 

Sex-abuse victims make new push to change Pa. law

(Sep 21, 2016)

With the fate of a child sex-abuse bill on the line in Harrisburg, clergy sex-abuse victims and their relatives told their stories Tuesday as part of a renewed push to change Pennsylvania law so victims can sue for decades-old attacks. A bill that passed the House in April would have, among other things, expanded the statute of limitations so victims age 50 and under could sue the men or women who abused them decades ago, as well as the institutions that supervised them. Citing concerns about its constitutionality and after critics, notably the Catholic Church, warned the measure could unfairly cripple some parishes, the Senate removed that provision. Read more

 

Advocates demand change in law to aid child sex abuse victims

(Sep 21, 2016)

PHILADELPHIA, PA National advocates for victims of child sexual abuse don't find it a coincidence that Pennsylvania has been home to some of the most notorious abuse scandals. The state's time limits for victims to pursue lawsuits or criminal charges, known as statutes of limitation, are on the more-restrictive side. And that signals to pedophiles that it's a safe place to abuse kids, advocates for victims said. Read more

 

Abuse victim in 'Spotlight': Extend statute of limitations in Pennsylvania

(Sep 20, 2016)

"We have a right to justice," Rozzi said. "It is time for anybody in our way to get out of our way and open that door to justice." Rozzi was joined by Phil Saviano, a leading activist within the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP), and Eric MacLeish, a Boston attorney who represented hundreds of victims abused by priests. Both were featured in "Spotlight." Several sexual abuse victims from Pennsylvania also spoke. Read more

 

Clergy abuse news conference: 3 takeaways

(Sep 20, 2016)

Days after confirming a statewide grand jury investigation into six Catholic dioceses, including Harrisburg, State Rep. Mark Rozzi stood with survivors of clergy sex abuse in Philadelphia to issue a call to action. Rozzi and others spoke in support of statute of limitations reform that includes a retroactive provision to allow adults who were victims of childhood sexual abuse to seek justice. Rozzi said a retroactive provision that was included in House Bill 1947, which would reform the statute of limitations for civil action in Pennsylvania, was "gutted" by the Senate during the last legislative session. Rozzi said he hopes to reintroduce the legislation with the retroactive provision during the next legislative session. Read more

 

Rep. Mark Rozzi pushes for statute of limitations reform for clergy abuse cases

(Sep 20, 2016)

PHILADELPHIA - A Berks County lawmaker said Tuesday that victims of clergy abuse should be able to seek justice at any age. Pennsylvania Rep. Mark Rozzi, a victim of child sexual abuse by a priest, joined several other victims and child abuse experts at a conference of the National Center for Victims of Crime in Philadelphia. Rozzi has been making headlines as of late after talking about his own experience. He revealed to 69 News last week that he was called to testify before a grand jury about clergy abuse within the Diocese of Allentown, which includes the five-county region of Berks, Carbon, Lehigh, Northampton and Schuylkill. Read more

 

Mark Rozzi says people have praised his news of grand jury probe

(Sep 17, 2016)

State Rep. Mark Rozzi said his phone has been ringing off the hook since he announced Thursday that a grand jury investigation is underway into alleged sexual abuse in the Allentown and Harrisburg Catholic dioceses. "It's been pretty insane," Rozzi said Fridy of the response. "So far it's been a lot of positive feedback, and I've been getting emails from people throughout the state saying thank you." Rozzi revealed Thursday that he was subpoenaed by the state attorney general's office three months ago and testified in the middle of August before a grand jury about his claims that an Allentown Diocese priest raped him when he was a middle school student in 1984. Read more

 

Report: Pennsylvania representative expects shocking findings from clergy sexual abuse investigation

(Sep 17, 2016)

Pennsylvania Rep. Mark Rozzi recently testified before a grand jury that's investigating clergy sexual abuse within Catholic churches across Pennsylvania, he said Thursday. Rozzi, who was sexually abused by a priest with the Diocese of Allentown when he was an altar boy, told WFMZ-TV 69 that "people are going to be really, really shocked" when the Pennsylvania Attorney General uncovers their findings. Read more

 

Harrisburg diocese under investigation; police called to office of state representative who testified to investigators

(Sep 16, 2016)

Speaking to PennLive on Friday, Rozzi said he gave his testimony to investigators about a month ago in Pittsburgh. Included in his testimony, he said, was information on his own abuse by a priest as a 13-year-old and his assessment of the fate of House Bill 1947, which reforms the statute of limitations. Victim advocates say the bill was dealt a blow by the Senate when the chamber voted to amend it and strip from it measures that would have given legal recourse to victims of past abuse. Read more

 

State prosecutors investigating allegations of sex abuse in Allentown, Harrisburg Catholic dioceses, Rozzi says

(Sep 16, 2016)

Prosecutors from the state attorney general's office have been conducting grand jury interviews with alleged sexual assault victims in the Allentown and Harrisburg Catholic dioceses, a Berks County lawmaker said. State Rep. Mark Rozzi said Thursday that he was subpoenaed by the grand jury three months ago to come and testify about his rape at the hands of an Allentown Diocese priest while he was a middle school student in 1984. He said he testified before the grand jury in Pittsburgh in the middle of August. Read more

 

Grand jury investigating sex abuse in Allentown, Harrisburg dioceses, lawmaker says

(Sep 16, 2016)

The Pennsylvania attorney general's office is looking into allegations of abuse by priests in the Allentown Diocese as part of a bigger statewide investigation, a lawmaker who was called to testify told The Morning Call on Thursday. Read more

 

Summer 2016 Rozzi Report

(Aug 30, 2016)

Dear Friends, Over the summer, I supported the passage of a state budget that funds education at record levels, without a broad-based tax increase. I will be the first to admit that this budget is far from perfect, but it is a solid step in the right direction, especially for our students and homeowners. After the protracted impasse of last year, it is refreshing to see this compromise, especially as it contains historic education funding that should help slow the increase of property taxes as we fight for a more comprehensive solution for homeowners. Read more

 

State rep calls Castor ‘wholly unsuitable’ for AG role

(Aug 18, 2016)

One state politician is glad Bruce Castor will not be acting as Pennsylvania’s attorney general for long. State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, sent out a press release Thursday applauding Gov. Tom Wolf’s decision to quickly appoint a replacement for resigned AG Kathleen Kane. Wolf named Bruce Beemer, Kane’s former first deputy, who left in July to become Wolf’s inspector general. He testified in Kane’s perjury and abuse of power trial. Read more

 

The Rozzi Report: Statute of Limitations Reform Special Edition

(Aug 15, 2016)

When the movie “Spotlight” won the Academy Award for Best Picture in February, no one could imagine what that foretold for our legislative efforts to reform Pennsylvania’s archaic and arbitrary statute of limitations laws for survivors of child sexual abuse. Read more

 

EDITORIAL: Speaking out for victims of clergy abuse

(Aug 01, 2016)

The Archdiocese of Philadelphia is learning that while a key aspect of House Bill 1947 might be going away, its biggest booster is not. State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-126th Dist., of Berks County, the man who authored the controversial language in the bill that would have retroactively extended the window for victims of child sexual abuse that occurred decades ago to sue the molesters and those that employed them, took his case to the church this week. Read more

 

Lawmaker, a clergy abuse victim, protests legislative inaction from cathedral steps

(Jul 19, 2016)

Standing with others who had been abused by Catholic clergy, State Rep. Mark Rozzi hurled stacks of grand jury reports onto the steps of the Cathedral Basilica of SS. Peter and Paul on Monday, and loudly vowed to continue trying to change Pennsylvania law so victims like himself can file suit in decades-old cases. Read more

 

Berks County Environmental Groups Approved for $470k State Investment, Sen. Schwank, Reps. Caltagirone, Rozzi Announce

(Jul 01, 2016)

HARRISBURG, July 1 – Three regional conservation, watershed protection and civic improvement groups will receive $470,000 in state investments for their ongoing efforts to protect and enhance the outdoor experience for Berks County residents. Sen. Judy Schwank and Reps. Thomas Caltagirone and Mark Rozzi said the Commonwealth Financing Authority today approved grants for: Implementation of the Berks County Conservancy’s Angelica Park master plan, $200,000; Recreation Commission of the Antietam Valley, Carsonia Park Improvement Project and Watershed Restoration Project, $215,000; Berks County Community Foundation, 18 th W.O.N.D.E.R. Neighborhood Improvement Project, $55,000. "All three of these projects are especially significant because they not only will vastly improve regional recreational resources and preserve the local environment, but also because they are the result of remarkable cooperation among a diverse array of elected and appointed officials and community-based organizations and agencies," Schwank said following CFA’s approval of the new investments. "I am just as grateful for the dedication, passion and vision of the many people who work for these groups and strive to improve the quality of life for all Berks Countians." "These grant awards are great news for the city of Reading and surrounding communities," Caltagirone said. "Everyone who worked so hard to put together such high-quality Read more

 

Berks lawmaker seeks stronger child sex abuse lawsuits bill
Sep 27, 2016

Lawmaker seeks stronger child sex abuse lawsuits bill
Sep 27, 2016

House takes another whack at controversial child sex abuse bil
Sep 27, 2016

Rozzi vows to get retroactivity clause back in abuse bill
Sep 27, 2016

Sex-abuse victims make new push to change Pa. law
Sep 21, 2016

Advocates demand change in law to aid child sex abuse victims
Sep 21, 2016

Abuse victim in 'Spotlight': Extend statute of limitations in Pennsylvania
Sep 20, 2016

Clergy abuse news conference: 3 takeaways
Sep 20, 2016

Rep. Mark Rozzi pushes for statute of limitations reform for clergy abuse cases
Sep 20, 2016

Mark Rozzi says people have praised his news of grand jury probe
Sep 17, 2016

Report: Pennsylvania representative expects shocking findings from clergy sexual abuse investigation
Sep 17, 2016

Harrisburg diocese under investigation; police called to office of state representative who testified to investigators
Sep 16, 2016

State prosecutors investigating allegations of sex abuse in Allentown, Harrisburg Catholic dioceses, Rozzi says
Sep 16, 2016

Grand jury investigating sex abuse in Allentown, Harrisburg dioceses, lawmaker says
Sep 16, 2016

Summer 2016 Rozzi Report
Aug 30, 2016

State rep calls Castor ‘wholly unsuitable’ for AG role
Aug 18, 2016

The Rozzi Report: Statute of Limitations Reform Special Edition
Aug 15, 2016

EDITORIAL: Speaking out for victims of clergy abuse
Aug 01, 2016

Lawmaker, a clergy abuse victim, protests legislative inaction from cathedral steps
Jul 19, 2016

Berks County Environmental Groups Approved for $470k State Investment, Sen. Schwank, Reps. Caltagirone, Rozzi Announce
Jul 01, 2016