CT- Oral arguments heard today, SNAP responds
For immediate release: Monday, September 22, 2014
The Connecticut Supreme Court today heard oral arguments in a case that could be monumental for children.
Hartford Archbishop Leonard Blair wants to fix what isn't broken and turn back the clock on kids' safety. He's asking the justices to overturn a 12 year old law that protects children by helping child sex abuse victims expose child molesters in court. We desperately hope he loses. If he wins, mothers, fathers, boys, girls, employers, neighbors, police and prosecutors all lose.
If Hartford's archbishop wins, it will be the biggest legal setback for the children's safety movement since
–Wisconsin's 1995 Pritzloff decision which, for years, made it almost impossible for clergy sex abuse victims to file civil lawsuits, no matter how egregious the crimes and cover ups
–Missouri's 1997 Brewer decision, which made it extremely hard for victims to do likewise, and
–the US Supreme Court's 2003 Stogner decision which enabled hundreds of alleged sex offenders – some being investigated, some who were already charged – go free.
Click here for recent coverage of this case.
Here's what we've said about it in the last few days:
We applaud Jacob doe for exposing clergy sex crimes and cover ups in Hartford and for having the courage and strength to endure a trial. We also applaud him for continuing to seek justice, despite delays by Archbishop Blair and his predecessor.
Despite Blair's refusal to accept a jury verdict and let Doe move ahead in his healing, we hope that Doe's bravery and persistence will encourage others who saw, suspected or suffered clergy crimes and cover ups in Connecticut to step forward, get help, and expose wrongdoing by Catholic officials too.
For more info on Blair's abuse and cover up track record in Toledo, click here.
(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We’ve been around for 25 years 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)