Canada--Victims praise Canadian lawmakers & urge more reforms
For immediate release: Wednesday, April 8
Two more Canadian provinces have reformed archaic and arbitrary laws that protect child predators. We applaud these moves and urge lawmakers to go further.
Specifically, we urge legislatures to make it easier for child sex abuse victims to pursue those who commit AND those who conceal child sex crimes, in both criminal and civil courts.
It’s tough to prevent a shrewd child molester from assaulting a child. But we can stop him before he assaults 30 or 40 children. How? By vigorously pursuing and harshly punishing his friends, colleagues and supervisors who ignore or hide his crimes.
Roughly one in ten children are sexually violated. If we are to reduce this horror, we must enable victims to take legal action any time they are able. Deadlines of any sort only help wrongdoers. These predator-friendly statutes of limitations must be eliminated. And laws that give a “free pass” to complicit colleagues must be reformed too.
(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We were founded in 1988 and have more than 20,000 members. Despite the word “priest” in our title, we have members who were molested by religious figures of all denominations, including nuns, rabbis, bishops, and Protestant ministers. 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.