Childhood sexual abuse survivor turned child advocate and activist Erin Merryn works full-time traveling the country asking legislators to introduce Erin’s Law, explaining why they should, testifying in front of state legislatures and serving on committees to draft Erin’s Law in each state that passes it. She also has a busy public speaking schedule at schools and conferences nationwide.
See her personal website at ErinMerryn.net
She began contacting legislators by letter from her home in Illinois in 2010 about the need to pass laws to require school districts to teach age-appropriate child sexual abuse education to elementary school students, school teachers, administrators and parents.
She had been speaking at public events about the need to protect children since 2005 after her first book, Stolen Innocence: Triumphing Over a Childhood Broken by Abuse: A Memoir, was published while she was just a senior in high school about her own experiences with rape (by a family friend from age 6-8) and incest (by a cousin from age 11-13).
After she was invited to meet with Illinois State Senator Tim Bivins in April, 2010, and he became the first sponsor of the law, Erin then testified in the Illinois State Senate and House, beginning her many experiences testifying in State legislatures.
Illinois became the first state to start an Erin’s Law task force Feb. 14, 2011, when Illinois Governor Pat Quinn signed Senate Bill 2843. It became effective the same day.
In 2011 Missouri became the first state to pass Erin’s Law, mandating that all public schools provide a program to K-12 students how to report anyone who tries to molest them.