Legislation Assemblyman Jamel Holley sponsored to fund counseling for victims of sexual assault gained approval Thursday in the General Assembly.
The bill (A-927) would establish the Sexual Offender Victim Counseling Fund and create a $100 assessment for convictions of certain sexual offenses in order to fund counseling for victims and their families. This assessment would be in addition to any other fine, fee or assessment imposed upon the convicted person.
“Victims of sexual violence often feel alone. They need to know support and resources are available to them as they work to move forward,” said Holley (D-Union). “The Sexual Offender Victim Counseling Fund would allow for the provision of counseling for individuals who have been through traumatic experiences.”
Among the offenses for which the $100 assessment designated in the bill would be imposed are: aggravated sexual assault; sexual assault; aggravated criminal sexual contact; kidnapping; endangering the welfare of a child by engaging in sexual conduct which would impair or debauch the morals of the child; creating child pornography; luring or enticing a child; criminal sexual contact if the victim is a minor; criminal restraint if the victim is a minor and the offender is not the parent of the victim; or an attempt to commit any of the aforementioned offenses.
The measure gained unanimous Assembly approval.