The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
For immediate release:
Sex Abuse Victims Want Bishops National Policy Strengthened
For First Time, Support Group Weighs in on USCCB Charter
SNAP Wants Names of Molesters Made Public by Church Officials
Bishops Should Visit Each Parish Where Pedophile Priests Worked, They Say
The nations largest support group for clergy molestation victims is urging Americas Catholic bishops to strengthen their sex abuse guidelines.
The deadline for suggested changes to the policy was Saturday. It will be revised this summer.
Leaders of the Chicago-based Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP, want each bishop to:
- permanently post on his diocesan web site the names of known or suspected abusive priests, and
- visit each parish where a known or suspected abusive priest worked and publicly, emphatically, repeatedly beg victims or witnesses to contact the police.
These two common sense steps would dramatically improve a very weak, vague and sporadically enforced policy, says SNAP president Barbara Blaine of Chicago.
The guidelines were drawn up in June of 2002 at the US Conference of Catholic Bishops meeting in Dallas.
Without the names of the dangerous men, every other pseudo-reform seems like so much public relations, said Mary Grant of Long Beach, California.
Bishops seem obsessed with policies, procedures, and paperwork, said David Clohessy of SNAP. But the real information that can help safeguard children the names of child molesters is still being kept secret.
None of Americas 300 bishops, SNAP says, is proposing any strengthening of the guidelines.
For more information:
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests