2-year window for clergy abuse lawsuits sent to state Senate

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — The Pennsylvania House is signing off on a proposal to give victims of child sexual abuse an opportunity to file lawsuits over claims that would otherwise be too outdated to pursue.

The House voted 173 to 21 Tuesday to send the Senate a bill creating a two-year window for litigation.

Establishing such a window was among the recommendations in a state grand jury report last month that found hundreds of Roman Catholic priests abused children going back to the 1940s.

The final House vote came without debate.

The proposal’s fate is unclear in the state Senate, where the top-ranking Republican has expressed concerns the two-year window may violate the state constitution.

A Senate Republican spokeswoman says the bill in its current form has yet to be discussed in closed-door caucus.

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