Atlanta Archbishop Wilton Gregory is asking Catholics to urge their representatives to vote against a law that would extend the time for victims of sex abuse to sue people and institutions. 
Photo: Bita Honarvar,
Photo: Bita Honarvar,

Catholic Church against Georgia law extending time for sex victims to sue

The Roman Catholic Church came out strongly Friday against legislation that would extend the time child abuse victims would have to sue the perpetrators and the institutions that harbored them.

Rep. Jason Spencer, R- Woodbine, introduced House Bill 605 and pushed it through his chamber, saying many victims don’t find the courage to acknowledge abuse until older than 40. His bill would extend the statute of limitations from age 23 to 38 and possibly longer.

The bill is now in the Senate Judiciary Committee.

The Catholic Church and others lobbied quietly behind the scenes to gut the bill.

Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory of the Archdiocese of Atlanta issued a strong statement late Friday as The Atlanta Journal-Constitution was preparing a story about the effort.

Gregory says the bill would be unfair to the church and would penalize it for events that happened decades ago and even for events perpetrated by some who are now dead.

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