Ramsey County and Archdiocese of St. Paul / Minneapolis Reach Settlement on Failure to Report Charges

Prosecutors in a Minnesota county have reached a settlement deal with church officials from the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis on charges stemming from the archdiocese’s failure to report allegations of child sexual abuse. We hope that the deal reached today will make children in Minnesota safer and believe that this deal is further evidence of the need for secular intervention into cases of clergy abuse.

The agreement between Ramsey County prosecutors and the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis never would have come about if it weren’t for the fact that survivors in St. Paul had reported their abuse to police, not just church officials. Similarly, the reform to policies and procedures being forced on the archdiocese never would have happened if those reports hadn’t been made in the first place. We applaud the survivors in this case whose bravery and courage has made children in Minneapolis and St. Paul safer.

This story is yet another example of the importance of secular law enforcement when it comes to preventing future cases of abuse. On their own, church officials have done the bare minimum to keep children safe, but when forced to do so by outside watchdogs, change can happen and children and communities can be safer.

We hope that this story will encourage others who have reported their abuse to church officials to also make a report to law enforcement. Similarly, we hope that this news will encourage other prosecutors and attorneys general around the country to use the powers of their office to take up investigations into cases of clergy abuse and take steps to keep the vulnerable in their communities safe.

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

(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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