Victims rights advocate running for state Senate seat

Ahearn Wants To Bring Fight To Albany




Victims rights advocate running for state Senate seat

You would think Laura Ahearn felt like she was up against it 25 years ago, working out of a single room in her house with two small kids, trying to find a way to give sexual abuse victims the strength and heart to stand up to their abusers, a chance to survive.

Ahearn is relentless — a fighter — and that’s what she will bring to the table in Albany if elected to the state Senate.

“I have never backed down from protecting our most vulnerable among us — from children and families to seniors and veterans to victims of hate and even unscrupulous contractors who fail to pay wages due,” she said. “People who need health care are victims. People who have outdated cesspools are victims. I’m centered on fighting for our community.”

When she was investigating Bishop William Murphy of Rockville Centre, she spent a week and $5000 of her own money gathering evidence he was protecting pedophile priests.

She is the founder and executive director of Crime Victims Center, Inc., which does business as Parents for Megan’s Law, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the prevention and treatment of child sexual abuse and rape, the provision of comprehensive trauma informed support services to victims of violent crime, and elderly, minor, and disabled victims of all crime. Megan’s Law is the name for a federal law, and informal name for subsequent state laws in the U.S. requiring law enforcement to make information available to the public regarding registered sex offenders. Laws were created in response to the murder of Megan Kanka.

Ahearn intends to form a coalition in Albany, adding victim’s rights resonate in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I’m not a divider,” she said. “I’m a unifier.”

This race pits Ahearn against Southampton Town Councilman Tommy John Schiavoni, Brookhaven Town Councilwoman Valerie Cartwright, New York State Public Employees Federation Regional Coordinator for Long Island Nora Higgins, and 19-year-old Skyler Johnson of Mt. Sinai.

Ahearn said in August of last year, before current state Senator Ken LaValle announces his retirement, she was the first to throw her name out for consideration.

“I started working to get to know the constituency. Putting together a campaign is like running a small business. I like what we are pulling together,” she said.

“When I am elected to the New York State Senate, I will never stop fighting for those I represent. I have decades of experience to back that up. I will always take on the tough battles and I will deliver for Senate District 1.”

rmurphy@indyeastend.com