News Story of the Day

New Minnesota law gives child sex abuse victims more time to sue

Hundreds of lawsuits with potential big payouts for victims of child sex abuse are expected after a new state law allows more time to sue accused perpetrators and the institutions where they worked.

The Catholic Church and other religious groups stand to be hit hardest under the Child Victims Act, according to victims rights advocates, who call the measure the nation’s most expansive such law.

Whistleblower Clohessy: "Nothing Can Erase the Horror"

US Star Whistle-Blower Clohessy on Sexual Abuse and the Difficulty of Coming to Terms

(This is the English translation of an article that appeared Sunday in the Kurier in Vienna)

He sat on the couch with US talkshow star Oprah Winfrey, he was a guest on Good Morning America, and even the The New York Times Magazine dedicated an extensive reportage to him. This man who has received so much media attention in the United States in recent years is David Clohessy, the spokesman of the NGO SNAP (see Info), which has taken up the cause of victims of sexual abuses in the church. He is the star among the investigators of sexual abuse in the USA.

Senior NSW police officer shredded documents from meetings with Catholic Church officials

New South Wales Police has admitted all records of a senior officer's involvement with a key Catholic Church body set up to deal with sexual abuse cases have been shredded.

This includes briefing papers and all documentation over a five-year period from 1998 to 2003.

The revelations come from Freedom of Information (FOI) documents obtained by the ABC's Lateline program.

The top level group established by the Catholic Church's bishops is known as the Professional Standards Resource Group (PSRG).

Victims outraged clergy can give evidence in private.

ASHLEY HALL: Victim support groups are outraged that senior members of the Catholic Church will be able to give evidence in private to the New South Wales Special Commission of Inquiry into sexual abuse investigations in the Hunter Valley.

That privilege is normally only extended to victims of abuse.

But the Commissioner, Margaret Cunneen, has ruled that private hearings are appropriate because of the potential for criminal charges to be laid in the future.

Here's Eliza Harvey.



The Ticking Clock on Child Abuse

Marci Hamilton battles the deadline that cheats victims.

By Rebecca Webber

The Cleveland kidnapping case, the Sandusky scandal at Penn State and the revelations from prestigious private schools like New York’s Horace Mann remind us that child sex abuse can happen anywhere.

Will changing of the guard bring any change on clergy sex abuse?

"In a generational changing of the guard, Southern Baptists are gaining a new advocate for their values in Washington and around the country as Russell Moore, a media-savvy theologian, takes the helm of the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission.” This news, reported last week by the Religion News Service, means that the ERLC will no longer be headed by Richard Land, who had been at the commission’s helm for nearly twenty-five years.

Philippine bishops accused of abuse cover-up

Catholic bishops in the Philippines are covering up “rampant sexual abuse of children by the clergy,” said a missionary priest who has been working with prostituted children for the past four decades.

Northern Ireland probe seeks testimony from child abuse victims in North America, Australia

DUBLIN — Experts investigating abuse within Northern Ireland children's homes appealed Monday for victims living abroad, chiefly in North America and Australia, to provide testimony so that the full scope of trauma can be documented.

Northern Ireland's Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry said it already has received abuse complaints from 271 former residents of about 5 orphanages and state-funded homes where children allegedly suffered sexual or physical harm.

Breaking the Silence: The Growing Faith Movement to End Sexual Violence

IN 2002, Anne Barrett Doyle’s church involvement took a radical turn. The Boston Globe had just launched a series investigating rampant abuse among clergy in Boston’s Archdiocese, and the Catholic woman found herself protesting something for the first time in her life: her own Church.

“I was just pulled into this story, inextricably, with a force I didn’t understand,” Boston-based Barrett Doyle said.

This pull led her to help form Bishop Accountability, a clearinghouse that works to create and maintain a public record of clergy abuse in the Catholic Church. To date, the group maintains extensive paper trails (“over one million pages,” said Barrett Doyle), on reported sex abuse scandals around the country.

Nearly a decade would pass before...

Chicago Jesuits hid sex crimes

Internal church records released Tuesday show that Chicago Jesuits consciously concealed the crimes of convicted sex offender Donald McGuire for more than 40 years as the prominent Roman Catholic priest continued to sexually abuse dozens of children around the globe.

SNAP Network is a GuideStar Gold Participant