For immediate release: Thursday, Nov. 7, 2013
Statement by Steve Theisen of Hudson IA, board chair of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (319 231 1663, Ltreggiefan@cs.com)
A Westchester Catholic school teacher is accused of raping a 14 year old boy.
While any child sex abuse is horrific, it’s even harder when women sexually violate boys. I know. I was sexually abused as a youngster by a Catholic nun.
Virtually every abused child feels alone and believes no one will understand if they find out. Boys molested by women feel this even more acutely. I’ve spoken with hundreds of them.
And while my heart goes out to every single person – adult or child – who was sexually assaulted by anyone, I especially feel sorry for this boy. At the same time, however, I admire his courage.
No Catholic official in America seeks out the media limelight like Cardinal Tim Dolan. We urge him to use his vast resources and public relations team to aggressively seek out others who saw, suspected or suffered child sex crimes by Amanda Iles, either at __ school or elsewhere.
If history is any guide, Dolan will stay silent or make a minimal announcement about these allegations. But if predators are to be convicted and kept away from kids, it will take more than that. A serious outreach effort should be mounted by school and archdiocesan staffers. Dolan should personally visit the school and beg those with knowledge or suspicions of these crimes to call law enforcement immediately.
We urge everyone involved to be precise in how they describe these alleged crimes.
An “encounter” is when you run into someone on the sidewalk. Words like “encounter” or “affair” or “sexual relationship” – words that imply consent – should never be used in child sex cases, no matter what gender the victim or the predator is.
It’s not an “encounter” when any adult has any kind of sexual contact with any child. It’s abuse. It’s hurtful. It’s illegal.
And it should be described that way. Always.