The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
SNAP Press Release
Native American Sex Abuse Victims Blast New Law
South Dakota Legislation Silences Many Who Were Hurt As Kids
Victims Call Measure 'Racist and Reckless' Because It Protects Wrongdoers
SNAP: "Legislators Basically Encourage Cover-Ups, Instead of Punishing Them"
Victims will also discuss how lawyers for the Catholic-run schools quickly and secretly worked to pass the law with no testimony from victims of sexual abuse or advocacy organizations.
521 N. Duluth Avenue in Sioux Falls
The measure was written by former church defense lawyer Steve Smith and was sponsored by Rep. Thomas Deadrick, Sen. Cooper Garnos, and Rep. Kent Juhnke. http://www.bishop-accountability.org/news2010/03_04/2010_03_08_Harriman_LawmakersWant.htm
Not a single victim of sexual abuse or an advocate for them was allowed to testify about the bill. http://www.bishop-accountability.org/news2010/03_04/2010_03_08_Harriman_LawmakersWant.htm
Indian boarding school victims believe that the law is a racist attempt to silence victims of what Amnesty International called "soul torture." http://www.amnestyusa.org/amnestynow/soulwound.html While other states are extending or eliminating statutes of limitations for child sexual abuse, only South Dakota - a state where the majority of victims are Native American - has made it more difficult for victims to come forward.
SNAP believes the new law will make it "virtually impossible" to learn who covers up or has covered up for child molesters, making it more likely that someone will cover up for child sex offenders in the future. The "arbitrary" measure stops victims who are older than 39 from taking legal action against anyone except the offender who molested them (leaving out any adult who concealed the abuse). The youngest known victims of the boarding schools are all over 40.
In 2001, Canada established the Truth Commission into Genocide in Canada, which said that the Indian boarding schools there - many run by the same groups as South Dakota's schools - were responsible for the sexual abuse of children, rampant suicide, unexplained deaths of babies born to rape victims by Catholic priests, and mass sterilization. http://www.amnestyusa.org/amnestynow/soulwound.html. SNAP says there is no reason to believe that the situation was any different in South Dakota.
Adults who were molested as kids at St. Joseph's Indian School, Tekakwitha Orphanage, St. Francis Mission, Holy Rosary and Marty Mission will participate in the event.
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests