28 Lawsuits Filed in Pennsylvania on Two-Year Anniversary of Pennsylvania Grand Jury Report
On the eve of the two-year anniversary of the bombshell Pennsylvania Grand Jury Report, twenty-eight people filed lawsuits against the Diocese of Pittsburgh. We hope that the legal theory being tested by these complaints holds true and that these brave men and women will have the opportunity to have their day in court.
These lawsuits have been filed thanks to a decision against the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown that is currently in front of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Survivor attorneys in Pennsylvania are testing a theory that revelations from the 2018 Grand Jury Report about Catholic officials’ active efforts to cover-up cases of sexual abuse allowed for an additional two-year window for claims to be filed. We believe that argument -- that most victims were unaware of how church leaders actively conspired against them until that truth was laid bare by A.G. Josh Shapiro’s report -- and we hope that these survivors have the opportunity to expose abusers and enablers when their lawsuits are allowed to proceed.
Finally, we hope that the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania agrees with the legal challenge brought before it and will rule in favor of truth and transparency rather than the status quo. We applaud these brave victims and their attorneys for taking this fight so far and know that the information they make public will lead to safer, more informed communities.
(SNAP, the Survivors Network, has been providing support for victims of sexual abuse in institutional settings for 30 years. We have more than 25,000 survivors and supporters in our network. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)