More than 300 Catholic priests across Pennsylvania sexually abused children over seven decades, protected by a hierarchy of church leaders who covered it up, according to a sweeping grand jury report released Tuesday.
The investigation, one of the broadest inquiries into church sex abuse in U.S. history, identified 1,000 children who were victims, but reported that there probably are thousands more.
Published in The Washington Post
New grand jury report reveals the Catholic Church has a seven step playbook they use to conceal the truth about priests raping children.
It is now common knowledge that the Catholic Church has been protecting and enabling predatory priests for decades if not centuries. In so doing the Catholic Church is responsible for the rape and sexually abuse of countless children.
But now a new grand jury report released by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court explains the policy and procedures the Catholic Church uses to cover-up, deny, and obfuscate the epidemic of sexual abuse and rape of children by Catholic clergy.
Published in Patheos.com
More than 10,000 Kiwi children were recorded as being abused last year – something the Children’s Commissioner has labelled New Zealand’s “enduring shame”.
Figures released under the Official Information Act show that between its creation in April 2017 and March 2018, Oranga Tamariki recorded 13,966 substantive findings of abuse.
Those numbers were made up of 11,519 individual children – with some young people having more than one incident of proven abuse against them.
Published in Stuff
The Catholic Church’s handling of a paedophile priest from Dunedin amounts to “negligence”, and a royal commission could reveal a cover-up, the head of the University of Otago’s theology and public issues centre says.
And an international expert on clerical sex abuse now believes Father Magnus Murray may have been offending for 50 years, and “almost certainly has dozens of victims”.
The comments came after ODT Insight yesterday revealed how Murray was allowed to continue as a priest after his offending in Dunedin was revealed to Bishop John Kavanagh in 1972.
Murray – who was convicted in 2003 of offences against four Dunedin boys between 1958 and 1972 – was sent to Sydney for counselling when two Dunedin parents complained in 1972.
Published in the NZ Herald
The Catholic priest now accused of leaving more victims in his wake should be defrocked, even now, a theological lecturer says.
Dr Rocio Figueroa, from Good Shepherd Theological College, said the response to clerical child abuse now needed to be “centred on the victims, not covering up the perpetrators or trying to protect the institution”.
Published in Otago Daily Times
A paedophile priest who left a trail of victims in his wake was allowed to continue as a man of the cloth for nearly two decades after his offending was revealed to the Bishop of Dunedin.
Survivors say it shows why the Catholic Church should be part of a Royal Commission into historic abuse. Chris Morris investigates.
Published in Otago Daily Times
PRESS RELEASE 23.07.2018
Male Survivors Aotearoa publish new Quality Standards for organisations providing support services for male survivors of sexual violence
“These quality standards are designed to help organisations assure the quality of all support services (clinical and non-clinical) they offer to male survivors of sexual abuse and to recognise that the provision of those services will be most effective when they take account of the male-specific responses to trauma resulting from sexual violence’ says Philip Chapman, the Chair of Male Survivors Aotearoa.
“The standards are intended to encourage all service providers to pay special attention to the needs of their male clients. We know that male survivors often respond differently to female victims of sexual violence in the way they engage with support services. If we are to encourage men to come forward and seek help we must ensure that we offer services that give them confidence that their particular needs will be properly considered.”
Kia ora koutou
As the end of our financial year in 2018 approaches, it is timely to reflect on the achievements and challenges of the national organisation over the last six months. Some of the highlights include:
Deeply personal and traumatic accounts of historic abuse in state care were given to police without the knowledge of those concerned.
A judge has said the abuse claimants were “some of the most vulnerable people in New Zealand society” and distrusted state agencies.
She made an order to stop the Ministry of Social Development (MSD) passing on information, provided for court proceedings, without the claimant’s consent.
Published in Stuff
A “vital” new 24/7 helpline has been launched to support the thousands of New Zealanders who experience sexual harm each year.
‘Safe to Talk’ (He pai ki te kōrero) is a confidential text, phone and email service available to anyone affected by sexual harm in any way – both survivors as well as perpetrators.
Published in Stuff.
Just months after the Australian Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse issued its final report, New Zealand is beginning its own royal commission – and the nation’s Catholic bishops are asking its institutions not to be excluded from scrutiny.
A royal commission is the highest form of inquiry in most countries where Queen Elizabeth II is the head of state, including Australia and New Zealand.
Right now, the New Zealand royal commission will look into youth detention centers, psychiatric hospitals and orphanages, as well as any government care services contracted out to private institutions.
Published in the Crux.
A Royal Commission on historic abuse in state care will “fail” survivors – including those still suffering in Otago – unless faith-based institutions are included, a campaigner says.
The call came from Liz Tonks, the head of a support network for survivors of abuse in faith-based institutions, as consultation on the draft terms of reference for the Royal Commission into Abuse in State Care entered its final week.
But Ms Tonks, who met Royal Commission chairman Sir Anand Satyanand yesterday to discuss her submission, said there was no sign of a “significant” change in the scope of the inquiry.
Published in the Otago Daily Times
Published in the International Journal of Public Health here >>
We aimed to assess intimate partner violence (IPV) among men and women from six cities in six European countries. Four IPV types were measured in a population-based multicentre study of adults (18-64 years; n = 3,496). Sex- and city-differences in past year prevalence were examined considering victims, perpetrators or both and considering violent acts’ severity and repetition. Male victimization of psychological aggression ranged from 48.8 % (Porto) to 71.8 % (Athens) and female victimization from 46.4 % (Budapest) to 70.5 % (Athens).
Male and female victimization of sexual coercion ranged from 5.4 and 8.9 %, respectively, in Budapest to 27.1 and 25.3 % in Stuttgart. Male and female victims of physical assault ranged from 9.7 and 8.5 %, respectively, in Porto, to 31.2 and 23.1 % in Athens. Male victims of injury were 2.7 % in Östersund and 6.3 % in London and female victims were 1.4 % in Östersund and 8.5 % in Stuttgart. IPV differed significantly across cities (p < 0.05).
Men and women predominantly experienced IPV as both victims and perpetrators with few significant sex-differences within cities. Results support the need to consider men and women as both potential victims and perpetrators when approaching IPV.
Intimate partner violence: a study in men and women from six European countries (PDF Download Available). Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/272518443_Intimate_partner_violence_a_study_in_men_and_women_from_six_European_countries [accessed Mar 06 2018].
From Radio NZ here >>
New Zealand’s plan to leave the Church and other non-state groups out of the Royal Commission of inquiry into abuse is getting some bad press in Australia today.
The Newcastle Herald has gone big with a story of Australian survivors of abuse afraid their New Zealand counterparts won’t get justice.
Joanne McCarthy, the journalist who did in Australia what the Boston Globe’s Spotlight team did in the US to break open the clerical sex abuse scandal, has interviewed them.
The approach being taken here was “completely unacceptable”, she said.
From an original article here on stuff.co.nz >>
It is disappointing that a government inquiry into past abuse of children will be limited to those cases which originated in state care. An opportunity to address systemic abuse in non-government institutions, and particularly religious organisations, is likely to be lost.
The inquiry is one of the Government’s pledges for its first 100 days in office and will be announced shortly. However, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has already said that inquiries will begin with “the harm that we (the State) had direct responsibility for”.
Victims’ groups have called on the Government to follow Australia’s example and include non-governmental organisations such as churches, charities, community groups and sports clubs in the inquiry. For now, at least, the Government appears to be ruling this out.
By Gordon Campbell, from an original article here on scoop.co.nz >>
Apparently, PM Jacinda Ardern has chosen to exclude faith-based institutions from the government’s promised inquiry into the abuse of children in state care. Any role for religious institutions – eg the Catholic Church – would be only to observe and to learn from any revelations that arise from the inquiry’s self-limiting focus on state-run institutions:
[Ardern] said the primary role of the inquiry was to look at the state’s responsibility….She said any religious institution with concerns needed to look at the issue, ask what they have done about the issues and their own history.
Such a narrowing of focus would be unfortunate, for a whole variety of reasons, and not merely because a more wide-ranging commission of inquiry in Australia found a high prevalence of children in care being sexually assaulted within religious institutions.