SNAP requests a status update of the auditing in California’s Catholic dioceses
COPY OF A LETTER FROM SNAP TO CALIFORNIA ATTORNEY GENERAL
3298 Rossmoor Pkwy., #6
Walnut Creek, CA 94595
Attorney General Rob Bonta
Office of the Attorney General
1300 I St.
Sacramento, CA 95814-2919
Dear Attorney General Bonta,
We are writing to request a status update on your office’s auditing of California’s Catholic dioceses, and the collection of reports your predecessor initiated in late 2018 and 2019.
We represent SNAP, the Survivors Network for Those Abused by Priests, and are in daily contact with abuse survivors from all over northern California, and periodically with survivors in southern California as well. We met with representatives of the Attorney General in 2018 in Oakland to share our extensive knowledge and experience of the ongoing catastrophe roiling the Catholic Church. We have not heard any report on the status of your office’s collection of reports and audits since you began your tenure as Attorney General. Your work is very important to us and to those we serve.
Although we imagine you are probably not able to reveal details of your office’s work, we would greatly appreciate a status report particularly in light of this critical period of California being in year three of the three-year window for civil suits against clergy abuse perpetrators and their dioceses. The sheer numbers of suits already filed, and expectations of many more to come, make us more aware than ever of how much a statewide investigation of the Catholic Church is needed and crucial for the protection of children and teens, and accountability for Catholic bishops and their collaborators. We know how helpful similar AG’s investigations in states like Pennsylvania and Michigan have been towards greater transparency and accountability.
I have been a priest of the Oakland Diocese since 1979. I chose to withdraw from active ministry in 2005 because the bishop of Oakland then, and all his successors since, have refused full transparency through opening their secret files, and continue to refuse to hold fully accountable themselves and their predecessors in spite of promises to the contrary.
Thank you for your consideration of our request and for any work already undertaken for this urgent matter.
Timothy Stier Zach Hiner.
Priest in voluntary exile Executive Director
Diocese of Oakland SNAP
Survivor Support Coordinator
Dan McNevin Joey Piscitelli
Bay Area Leader SNAP Leader
SNAP Board Member Northern California