January 12, 2005

Church needs to protect kids at risk



The letter last month from a majority of the members of the Seattle Archdiocese's Case Review Board on sex abuse should have served as a vigorous wake-up call to Archbishop Alex Brunett and his staff. We share their concerns.

Specifically, we urged Brunett against disbanding this hard-working, well-intentioned and experienced panel of abuse experts. We also urged the archbishop to immediately name and discipline the suspended priest who violated church policy by participating in a public service and quickly release the names of the other known and suspected pedophile priests who have been suspended due to credible abuse allegations.

For a group of largely devout Catholics and other caring professionals, the language the review board members used in the letter and subsequent media interviews was clear and direct and Brunett fought the board at every turn.

More specific, we maintain that making known the names of all admitted and suspected abusive clerics is common sense. It's the least that can be done to protect children still at risk. As the review board pointed out, bishops in Milwaukee, Los Angeles, Tucson, Toledo, Spokane and other dioceses have taken this long-overdue step to safeguard kids.

Posted by kshaw at January 12, 2005 07:34 PM