Diocese of Scranton Releases Compensation Report, SNAP Responds

Catholic officials in Scranton have concluded their compensation program after paying nearly $25 million to 213 survivors of child sexual abuse. We are glad that these survivors have received acknowledgment of their pain and suffering, as well as some restitution. We know that because of them, more information about the Catholic sexual abuse scandal in Pennsylvania has been made public.

As a result of this process, eight more abuser names have been added to Scranton's list of the “credibly accused,” an increase of 10%. Among those names is a lay teacher. We are glad that Catholic officials in Scranton chose to list him among the other perpetrators. The reality is, lay teachers and nuns probably add 20% to the abuser total, based on SNAP's analytics. We believe there are more teachers, staffers, nuns, brothers, and deacons still unnamed and we encourage the Bishop to conduct outreach to specifically seek out those victims.

We know that without the work done by AG Josh Shapiro and the brave survivors who participated in his 2018 grand jury, this compensation program would probably never have been opened and these survivors would likely still be suffering in silence. Most importantly, these eight men would still be hidden.

The original Grand Jury report identified an 8.5% abuse rate, but revelations since the publication of the report, through new lawsuits and compensation programs like this, have caused a significant increase in that rate. With these eight names, the original 301 abusers identified in the report has grown to 363, a 20% increase that suggests the Catholic abuse rate in Pennsylvania is 10%. These numbers are staggering and speak to the likelihood of hidden victims throughout the state. Clearly, there is a need for Catholic officials in Pennsylvania to continue their outreach and encourage those who have still not come forward to make a report to AG Shapiro’s hotline.

CONTACT: Zach Hiner, SNAP Executive Director (zhiner@snapnetwork.org, 517-974-9009)

(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)


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