‘Long overdue’: Whitmer signs bills advocated for by sexual assault survivors

BY ANNA LIZ NICHOLS: Complete Post through this link…

Lawmakers have introduced dozens of bills for years stemming from lessons the state learned from survivors of sexual violence since the Larry Nassar sex abuse scandal. On Thursday, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed a six-bill package and announced her intention of signing more in the coming weeks.

The victim impact statements of the more than 150 women who told their stories of sexual abuse at the hands of former Olympic Gymnastics and Michigan State University doctor Larry Nassar were the catalyst in 2018 for the introduction of several bills to address hurdles victims face with reporting sexual violence and prevent serial sexual abuse from occuring again. 

However, five years later, legislative efforts to address the rights of sexual violence victims with legislation, often referred to as “Nassar bills,” have expanded. bill sponsors and advocates say, and stand to benefit everyone in the state.

The measures in the bills signed into law Thursday are “long overdue”  and will protect survivors and prevent victimization, the state’s lead prosecutor in the Nassar case, Angela Povilaitis, said in a statement from the governor’s office Thursday.

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