SNAP Draws Attention to Unregulated Facilities Housing Abusive Priests
According to representatives from Missouri’s top law enforcement office, facilities in Missouri where abusive priests are sent to live lack oversight from the attorney general due to statutory limitations. Now, we are calling on Missouri’s elected officials to address this gap with legislation that would allow attorneys general the ability to oversee and investigate facilities that purport to house abusive priests.
Both the Vianney Center and St. Luke’s Institute are centers run by church officials to which clergy accused of sexual abuse are housed while being “treated.” However, the lack of oversight from secular law enforcement officials means these treatments used are unregulated and unmonitored and that due to the nature of the men living there, these offices place their surrounding communities at higher risk.
Children and the vulnerable in Missouri should be as protected as possible, and so SNAP is calling for legislative action in Missouri that would give the attorney general’s office the statutory oversight and jurisdiction to monitor these facilities and investigate any wrongdoing at them. The sooner that elected officials in Missouri get to work closing loopholes and ensuring facilities like these are monitored, the sooner that children and vulnerable adults will be protected from these large concentrations of abusive men.
SNAP has sent letters to Gov. Michael Parson and leaders in the state house and senate about this issue. Those letters were received by all parties on April 28.
(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)