Rep. Tulsi Gabbard Votes to Pass Bill to Protect Young Athletes from Sexual Abuse

January 29, 2018
Press Release

Washington, DC—Following the sentencing of former Olympic gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar for the abuse of more than 150 young athletes, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (HI-02) today voted to pass bipartisan legislation to strengthen reporting requirements and increase protections for young athletes across the country. The Protecting Young Victims from Sexual Abuse and Safe Sport Authorization Act (S. 534) would increase requirements to report and investigate suspected child abuse claims in amateur athletic organizations, including requiring reporting by coaches and adults associated with national amateur sports organizations. S. 534 passed the House with bipartisan support by a vote of 406-3.

 

Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard said: “For decades, monsters like Larry Nassar have preyed on young children without consequence or justice—robbing survivors of their innocence and childhoods. These perpetrators must be held accountable. While this legislation cannot undo the damage done, it will begin the healing process for survivors and help prevent further abuse of our children by requiring prompt reporting allegations of child abuse to law enforcement.”

 

The Protecting Young Victims from Sexual Abuse and Safe Sport Authorization Act is supported by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), National Children’s Alliance, Rights4Girls, University of Utah Law Professor Paul Cassell, Child Sex Crime Victims’ Lawyer James Marsh, Crime Victims Expert Steve Twist, National Crime Victims Center, National Association of VOCA Administrators, Child USA, National Organization for Victim Assistance, ToPrevail, ChampionWomen, National Children Advocacy Center, the National Alliance to End Sexual Violence and Rape Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN). The legislation is also supported by organizations within the Olympic movement, including the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), the National Governing Body Council, and the United States Center for Safe Sport.

 

Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard is a leading voice in Congress fighting against sexual harassment, assault, and abuse. Her legislation, Talia’s Law, was signed into law in 2016 to strengthen reporting requirements for suspected abuse and neglect of military children -- requiring the same process and protections for any other child. She also helped to introduce the bipartisan Me Too Act to prevent sexual harassment in Congress, and provide a fair, transparent path to justice for victims.

 

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