WV--Victims praise police in prostitution sting
For immediate release: Friday, Feb. 13
Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314-503-0003, bdorris@SNAPnetwork.org )
There’s an important lesson in the Charleston prostitution arrests: no person’s title, role or job description automatically guarantees that he or she is above reproach or the law. Anyone - priest, minister, politician, or educator – can be guilty of sex offenses.
We owe it to victims of sexual violence to never be blinded by an adult’s popularity, power or position. Innocent kids and vulnerable adults are safest when we remember that anyone is capable of sexual crimes or misdeeds, even those who seem to be “pillars of the community.”
Often, sexually troubled adults work very hard to seem normal, even likeable. They count on us to believe the misguided myth that sex offenders are obvious misfits who give everyone “the creeps.” But they are most often charming, charismatic, successful and outgoing.
We applaud Charleston police. And we hope that officials at the school district and the church where the superintendent and the minister worked will aggressively seek out anyone else who may have seen, suspected or suffered crimes or misdeeds to call law enforcement.
(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.