SC- Bob Jones reverses themselves and allow GRACE to complete report
For immediate release Tuesday, February 25
Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 862 7688 home, 314 503 0003 cell, SNAPdorris@gmail.com)
We are grateful that Bob Jones university officials have reversed themselves and will let GRACE complete its report about campus sex crimes.
Still, we're troubled by the school's recent, sudden and unilateral move to cancel the report. We can't help but be worried about university officials' motives and whether they are trying - or may still try - to influence the report itself.
Regardless, it's crucial that those who saw, suspected or suffered campus sex crimes or cover ups take two steps. First, they should report to law enforcement, no matter who the perpetrator is, what school officials have done or promised, and when or where the crimes happened. And second, they should realize that the GRACE report is just one step in a long process of slowly beginning to reverse an unhealthy climate of self-serving secrecy at this university.
Victims should stay in therapy, keep attending self-help groups, and continue working hard to recover from the trauma they experienced at Bob Jones. No one event magically erases a horrific betrayal or "cures" a victim of the nightmares, depression, addictions, insomnia, eating disorders and other devastating effects or rape and the sometimes almost equally devastating effects of institutional denial and insensitivity.
(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. SNAP was founded in 1988 and has more than 15,000 members. Despite the word “priest” in our title, we have members who were molested by those in positions of authority including priests, nuns, rabbis, bishops, Protestant ministers, Scout leaders, teachers and coaches. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)
50 State AG Call for Grand Jury
Any investigation must be:
- independent of and separate from the church
- must have subpoena powers and ability to compel testimony under oath
Anything short of these criteria is a sham and whitewash.
In addition, write letters to the editor, make phone calls to politicians as they can apply pressure to keep them responsive to our demand. We need to make efforts to ensure that they follow up on what the state is doing to investigate these crimes.
The Attorneys General of forty states have inquired about the grand jury process in Pennsylvania. Let's get statewide investigations going in fifty states.
Note to Letter Writers
Use your own words and style of writing. Cut and paste from the templates as you wish. Include your experiences, whether as a survivor or as a member of the community. And relate your letter to the state you were abused in or state now living in.