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Catholic Diocese of Sacramento files for bankruptcy, survivor group objects

The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) worries the Diocese filing for bankruptcy means survivors will get much lower settlement payments.   >>>.FULL STORY HERE<<<<

Another Brownsville priest accused of child sexual abuse; SNAP again urges outreach

For immediate release, April 8, 2024 A priest in the Catholic Diocese of Brownsville, Texas, has been removed from ministry in the wake of an accusation of child sexual abuse. This is the second cleric in the Diocese, that we know of, to be accused this year. The other clergyman was arrested in February. At the time of the arrest, SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, urged the Bishop to do immediate outreach to beg other victims and witnesses to report to law enforcement. We renew our plea as this second case is being investigated by the Diocesan Review Board. Brownsville Bishop Daniel E. Flores received notification on March 15th that Msgr. Gustavo Barrera had been accused of a child sex crime. The priest denied the claim, but submitted his resignation and retirement as pastor of Our Lady of Sorrows in McAllen, and the Bishop accepted this resignation on March 23rd. However, the accusation was not made public until April 3rd.

SNAP stands in solidarity with excommunicated father; says actions of Louisiana bishop will discourage victims from coming forward

For immediate release: March 25, 2024 A Louisiana man, who worked as a Catholic deacon and whose son was sexually assaulted by his priest as a child, has been excommunicated by his former bishop. As far as SNAP can tell, no perpetrator has ever faced this harsh ecclesiastical penalty. We call on the faithful who are appalled by this action to contact the bishop and express their dismay. Scott Peyton’s excommunication from the Church on March 13, 2024, at the hands of Diocese of Lafayette Bishop J. Douglas Deshotel, seems to us to be vindictive, unnecessary, and likely to have a chilling effect on those victims and their families who are also believers. While Scott had worked as a deacon in the Diocese alongside his son Oliver’s abuser, Fr. Michael Guidry, Scott had already stepped away from this position in December, telling the Bishop at the same time that he and his family had moved on to another faith community. We cannot help but consider that the true motive for this excommunication was to discourage victims and their families who are also still practicing Catholics from coming forward in the future. Many of the faithful believe that those who are excommunicated die in a state of sin, and consequently are condemned to hell. Fear of incurring this same penalty would certainly be a powerful deterrent to those who still want to be a part of the Church to stay silent. Bishop Deshotel was also behind the recently successful appeal to overturn the state’s three-year lookback window. That action too is likely to discourage all Catholic victims, not just those who wish to remain communicants, from coming forward. Yet exposing hidden predators and their enablers will help to safeguard children today and in the future. Moreover, the publication of perpetrator names can also be the first step to healing for those still suffering alone and in silence from their abuse.   While the Catholic Church claimed in 2002 to be turning over a new leaf, welcoming the reports of survivors and their families and promising not to hide perpetrators, Bishop Deshotel’s intimidation tactics and hypocrisy gives the lie to those claims, in our opinion. We think it is long past time to push back. As Scott’s case illustrates, even the children of those who work hard to support the mission of the Church can be subjected to the trauma of child sexual abuse, which has life-long consequences. Moreover, while the abusers apparently continue to enjoy protection from Catholic officials, those who speak truth to power seem likely to find themselves punished. If you too find this state of affairs intolerable, please let Bishop Deshotel know how you feel. Let him know in no uncertain terms that his tactics will not prevent anyone from speaking out to protect children. Bishop J. Douglas Deshotel 1408 Carmel DriveLafayette LA 70501337-261-5614 [email protected] CONTACT: Curtis Garrison, SNAP Louisiana and SOSCSA.org ([email protected], 214-808-2878), Melanie Sakoda, Survivor Support Director ([email protected], 925-708-6175), Mike McDonnell, SNAP Executive Director ([email protected], 267-261-0578),  Shaun Dougherty, SNAP Board President ([email protected], 814-341-8386) (SNAP, the Survivors Network, has been providing support for victims of sexual abuse in institutional settings for more than 35 years. We have more than 25,000 survivors and supporters in our network. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)

Louisiana Supreme Court strikes down lookback window for CSA survivors; SNAP urges action in response

For Immediate Release: March 26, 2024  On March 22, 2024, the Louisiana Supreme Court, in a 4-3 split decision, overturned the three-year window that allowed child sex abuse victims to sue their abusers and the institutions that shielded the perpetrators, even if the statute of limitations had run out on their claims. The majority of the high court said that the lookback law was “unconstitutional.” SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, calls on all Louisiana survivors, their family members, and those who support them, to raise their voices in protest. Our hearts go out to the devastated victims, many of whom have waited for decades to expose their abusers as well as the groups that protected the perpetrators. Delayed disclosure of child sexual abuse is the rule. Trauma-informed experts say more survivors disclose between the ages of 50-70 compared to any other age group. When archaic laws limiting victims’ access to the courts are overturned or lifted for a time, communities are safer. Knowledge about who the hidden predators and their enablers are not only helps to safeguard today’s children, the exposure of perpetrator names can also be the first step to healing for those still suffering alone and in silence.   The Louisiana Supreme court justices overturned a law passed by a unanimous legislature, and signed by then governor John Bel Edwards, who was supported by then attorney general and current governor Jeff Landry. All of these Louisiana officials viewed the window as constitutional. The will of the people of the state was thwarted by four men. We wonder if their actions might be considered “exceptional circumstances” that would allow for their removal or impeachment? Four Louisiana supreme court justices – James Genovese, Scott Crichton, Jeff Hughes and Piper Griffin – agreed that the “lookback window” law was unconstitutional. The majority opinion, written by Justice Genovese, said reviving old sexual abuse claims violated the “due-process rights” of accused abusers and their enablers. The other three Justices, William Crain, Jay McCallum and John Weimer, the Court’s Chief Justice, disagreed. Justice Crain wrote in the minority opinion that “[T]he forum for this debate is the legislature, not this court. The legislature had that debate and – without a single dissenting vote – abolished the procedural bar and restored plaintiffs’ right to sue.” It seems sad to us that there does not seem to have been any discussion of whether or not the constitution might also value the lives of innocent Louisiana children over “due process.” Whether or not overruling 200 elected officials are “exceptional circumstances,” we have set up a petition people can express their displeasure with this unconscionable decision to ignore the rights of boys and girls to grow up without experiencing the life-long trauma of child sexual abuse. If nothing else, we would like to make our anger over this ruling heard loud and clear. Please sign our petition [need link to petition], and then share your support with your contacts, and on social media. Stand with us and shout out that it is more important to protect children, then to shield those who abuse them or allow them to be assaulted from the consequences of their actions. CONTACT: Curtis Garrison, SNAP Louisiana and SOSCSA.org ([email protected], 214-808-2878), Melanie Sakoda, Survivor Support Director ([email protected], 925-708-6175), Mike McDonnell, SNAP Executive Director ([email protected], 267-261-0578),  Shaun Dougherty, SNAP Board President ([email protected], 814-341-8386) (SNAP, the Survivors Network, has been providing support for victims of sexual abuse in institutional settings for more than 35 years. We have more than 25,000 survivors and supporters in our network. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)

Abuse victims presser MONDAY 11:15 am (4/15) in Jeff City MO

Victims beg MO AG to intervene in growing scandal More abuse at Christian boarding schools is surfacing, they say SNAP to Bailey: “Warn parents, launch an investigation & prod local prosecutors” Group also asks lawmakers to reform MO's 'predator-friendly statute of limitations' WHATAfter a sidewalk news conference - featuring signs and childhood photos - child sex abuse victims and their supporters will--discuss recent revelations & reports of abuse at largely unregulated ‘faith-based’ boarding schools in Missouri,--hand-deliver a letter to Missouri's attorney general urging him to warn the public, launch an investigation and prod local prosecutors to do likewise, and--beg lawmakers to reform Missouri’s ‘archaic, arbitrary and predator-friendly’ statute of limitations on child sexual abuse. They will also --testify at a legislative panel urging legislators to reform outdated child safety laws and --prod those who ‘saw, suspected or suffered’ wrongdoing at these facilities and other institutions to call law enforcement. WHENMonday, April 15 at 11:15 a.m. WHEREOn the sidewalk outside the Missouri Attorney General's office, 207 W. High Street (between Broadway and Washington) in Jefferson City

Clergy abuse victims leafletting & news conf Wed 3/20 @ 1:00 p.m. in Alton

  Victims to leaflet church where accused priest was ousted   With little attention, cleric was suspended 6 months ago   A 2nd predator priest, now deceased, also worked there   SNAP: ‘Bishop must do outreach to seek others in pain’   WHAT Six months ago, a priest was quietly suspended after being accused of sexually abusing a child. Clergy sex abuse victims and their supporters will hold a brief sidewalk news conference and then leaflet around a Catholic parish and school where he worked and reportedly molested. WHEN Wednesday, March 20 at 1:00 p.m. WHERE Outside Immaculate Conception-St. Mary's Church, 519 East 4th Street in Alton, IL (618 465 4284)

The Archdiocese of Washington DC (ADW) wants to thwart the will of the people of Maryland by declaring the CVA unconstitutional.

The Archdiocese of Washington DC (ADW) wants to thwart the will of the people of Maryland bydeclaring the CVA unconstitutional. ADW speaks out of both sides of its mouth after relying on funds obtained by the retroactiveapplication of asbestos civil cases. The CVA was passed unanimously in the Maryland legislature and rapidly signed by the governor WHAT: A sidewalk news conference, abuse survivors and advocates who are part of SNAP, the SurvivorsNetwork of those Abused by Priests, will demand that the ADW stop their immoral and unethicalpractices of re-abusing and re-traumatizing survivors by attempting to have the Child Victims’ Act (CVA)declared unconstitutional. In 2017 the ADW, along with the other two dioceses in Maryland quietlysnuck in a provision to the child abuse statutes that seemingly treated child abuse under statute ofrepose restrictions. This seemingly prevented the ability for child abuse lawsuits from EVER beingresurrected through any retroactive changes in the statutes. However, even first year law studentsunderstand that you can pretend to call a pig a duck, but that doesn’t make it a duck. Child abuse simplydoes not follow the definition of repose. The ADW is doing this despite the fact that about 25 years ago,they not only benefited from but actually encouraged the legislature to amend the existing statute ofrepose for asbestos so that they, the ADW, could sue for retroactive damages, which they did. WHEN: Wednesday 3/6/24 at approximately noon (immediately following the hearing scheduled to startat 10 AM)

Take Action and Stop Child Sexual Abuse

If you see child sexual abuse, or have a reasonable suspicion of sexual abuse or your child has been sexually abused, call 911 or your local police immediately. 

If you suspect abuse, call the National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child or visit the Child Help Hotline. Trained crisis operators staff the lines 24/7 to answer your questions. If necessary, they will show you how to report in your local area.

Child pornography is a federal crime. If you see or suspect images that may be child pornography, report to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children CyberTip Line

 

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