May 07, 2005

Blair asks priests to help fight amended abuse bill

Toledo Blade


The Toledo Catholic Diocese is stepping up its efforts to defeat a bill that would rewrite Ohio's statutes of limitations for victims of child sexual abuse.

Bishop Leonard Blair sent a letter to diocesan priests this week stating that Senate Bill 17 "should be of serious concern to all of us," and urged them to contact their state representatives to voice opposition to the legislation.

The bishop, who met with Ohio lawmakers last month to discuss the legislation, described the current bill as "watered down" compared to its original version.

The original bill, which he supported, would have made it mandatory for church volunteers as well as clergy and employees to report allegations of child sexual abuse. The current bill does not apply to church volunteers.

The diocese has asked pastors of all its 157 parishes in 19 counties in northwest Ohio to include informational sheets, titled "Questions and Answers About Senate Bill 17," in bulletins passed out in their churches this weekend. The bishop's letter and the Q&A also are published on the diocesan Web site,

Posted by kshaw at May 7, 2005 09:03 AM