ALBANY, N.Y. — Lessons in recognizing sexual abuse and exploitation are coming to New York's public schools starting in July, 2020.

Governor Andrew Cuomo Thursday signed 'Erin's Law'. It requires public schools to teach prevention classes for grades K-8 that are age appropriate, helping kids recognize the warning signs of abuse and where they can turn for help.

The new legislation is named for Erin Merryn, an abuse survivor and activist who has advocated for similar laws nationwide for over a decade.

"Sexual abuse is a nationwide epidemic that has inflicted unimaginable pain on countless children, and we must use every lever at our disposal to stop it," said Governor Cuomo. "Many children who have been a victim of these horrific crimes or who are still suffering from abuse don't have the information or emotional tools they need to fight back. By requiring schools to teach kids how to recognized and ultimately thwart this heinous behavior, we are giving our most vulnerable New Yorkers a voice and empowering them to protect themselves."

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