IL--Pro-Hastert letters will be disclosed; Victims respond
For immediate release: Friday, April 15, 2016
We are grateful that a judge insists that letters backing Denny Hastert be made public. Sunshine is the antidote to secrecy, especially when powerful adults commit or conceal heinous child sex crimes.
We hope this move will deter some who might be ashamed to publicly advocate for predators. Well-meaning adults should think long and hard before seeking leniency for child molesters.
It’s still not too late for others who saw, suspected or suffered child sex crimes by Hastert or cover ups by his supervisors, colleagues, family or friends to speak up. He’ll be sentenced April 27. It’s important that the judge knows as much as he can about Hastert’s wrongdoing when he makes his decision.
And we beg every person with information or suspicions about child sexual abuse to protect kids by calling police, get help by calling therapists, expose wrongdoers by calling law enforcement, get justice by calling attorneys, and be comforted by calling support groups like ours. This is how kids will be safer, adults will recover, criminals will be prosecuted, cover ups will be deterred and the truth will surface.
(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 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.
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.