How Jehovah’s Witness leaders are responding to child abuse scrutiny
By Trey Bundy / December 14, 2015, Reveal, the Center for Investigative Reporting
Besieged by reports that Jehovah’s Witnesses shield child sexual abusers from prosecution, the religion’s top leadership appears to have settled on a strategy: “Let the story die.”
A Portuguese news documentary released in October was yet another report from across the globe to detail the Witnesses’ policy of not reporting child abusers to law enforcement. As in other media reports, top officials refused to speak to the journalists who produced it.
After it aired, however, David Splane, a member of the Witnesses’ Governing Body, spoke to 600 congregations from the religion’s Portuguese headquarters in Carnaxide, according to TVI, the station that aired the documentary. Splane’s talk provided . . .
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.