Rome--Pope will speak at United Nations
Pope will speak @ United Nations; SNAP responds
For immediate release: Monday, Jan. 19
Statement by Barbara Blaine of Chicago, president of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (+1 312 399 4747, firstname.lastname@example.org)
Pope Francis confirmed today that he'll speak to the United Nations in NYC later this year.
When he does, we urge him to directly address the two UN panel reports that are highly critical of how top Catholic officials still endanger kids, move predators and maintain secrecy around clergy sex crimes.
Francis has basically ignored these compelling reports while defensive underlings ducked, dodged and denied the solid evidence in them and attacked the motives of the dedicated volunteers who wrote them.
While making progress on church morale, finances and governance, Francis has made minimal gestures on abuse and cover ups. He must do more. We strongly urge diplomats and UN staff to prod the pope to take tangible action to expose crimes, punish enablers, help prosecutors, deter cover ups and make kids safer right now by ousting and revealing both clerics who commit and conceal sexual violence.
(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.