March 21, 2005

'New options' must be found to help abuse victims heal

Irish Independent

NEW resources to compensate victims of clerical sex abuse need to be found, the Irish Bishops' Conference heard yesterday, because the bulk of a trust fund to meet such claims has already been spent.

Over the past nine years, 143 claims against 36 priests for child sex abuse have cost the Irish Catholic Church 8.78m.

This has been paid out of their Stewardship Trust which is now undergoing a review.

Most of these cases occurred prior to 1996 and the bishops heard that they are not covered by any existing insurance policy.

Since 1996, survivors of abuse have received 6.24m from the trust, while the legal costs have added an additional 2.53m to the bill.

The Stewardship Trust was funded by the traditional Catholic diocesan insurer in Ireland, Church and General, with payments of 4.3m in 1996 and a maximum agreement to pay up to 6.3m in 1999.

Posted by kshaw at March 21, 2005 07:20 AM