Diocese of Santa Rosa To Release List of Clergymen Accused of Abuse

Another diocese has announced that they will release a list of names of clergy who have been accused of sexual abuse.

It is always helpful for survivors when these lists are posted, especially for those who may be suffering in silence. Seeing that they are not alone helps victims heal and could also compel others who were abused – whether by the same person or in the same place – to come forward.

What is not helpful for survivors is when church officials carefully curate these lists, leaving off names of priests who are accused because they do not meet the diocese’s ever-changing and nebulous definition of “credible.” For an example of the problem with church officials using “credible” as a metric, one needs to look no further than this case from San Diego. We hope that when the Diocese of Santa Rosa releases this list on Saturday, that no such curation has occurred.

For the sake of not only survivors, but also the truth and the public’s right to know it, we encourage California’s attorney general to look closely at this disclosure by the Diocese of Santa Rosa and compare it to records and files seized through the course of an independent investigation.

We call on Bishop Robert F. Vasa to expand the list to include not only priests, but also any nuns, brothers, deacons or other church staff who may have allegations against them. Abusers are not confined to the priesthood. We also urge Bishop Vasa to post the complete list permanently on Diocesan and parish websites, with updates as needed.

CONTACT: Dan McNevin, SNAP California (dan.mcnevin@aol.com, 415-341-6417), Joey Piscitelli, SNAP California (caljoey1@aol.com, 925-262-3699) Melanie Sakoda, SNAP Secretary (melanie.sakoda@gmail.com, 925-708-6175) Zach Hiner, 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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