The SAFE Act

On Wednesday, April 11, Senator Mike Morrell (R-Rancho Cucamonga) presented SB 1456, the Sexual Abuse-Free Education (SAFE) Act, in the Senate Education Committee, advocating for reforms that will better protect students from educators guilty of sex abuse who jump from school to school.

Kathryn Leehane, a childhood sexual abuse victim who has led efforts to shine light on decades of sexual misconduct at Presentation High School, testified in support of the bill.

“Accusations on range from harassment to inappropriate touching and kissing to rape. The most shocking part is that past and present principals, Marian Stuckey and Mary Miller didn’t report these incidents—some as recent as 2017—to authorities as required by law. They allowed our abusers to stay at the school and/or quietly move on to other schools. They simply passed the trash … School should be a haven, not a hell.”

Read her full testimony.

“Presentation’s alarming pattern of allowing abusers to quietly leave the school and seek employment elsewhere is exactly why we need bills like The SAFE Act. Jeffrey Hicks is a particularly egregious example of passing the trash. After Pres let him leave with a clean record, he re-offended at a school for children with disabilities,” Leehane stated after the hearing.

SB 1456 is supported by S.E.S.A.M.E., Stop Educator Sexual Abuse, Misconduct, & Exploitation. More information on the SAFE Act is available here.