November 23, 2005

Clerical abuse victims press legislators to lift limit on lawsuits

Toledo Blade


COLUMBUS - "Where was the outcry? Where was the outrage?" asked Mike Chakers yesterday as he stood next to his two adult sons.

Both, he told the Ohio House Judiciary Committee, were sexually abused by the same Cincinnati priest more than 20 years ago, and he said he's still listening for the outrage from the Catholic Church.

"My youngest son confided in me not long ago that his first sexual experience when he was just a young boy came literally at the hands of a priest," Mr. Chakers said. "How terribly sick and perverted."

More than 100 people, many of them claiming to be victims of sexual abuse at the hands of the clergy, attended a day-long hearing to voice support for a bill establishing a one-time, one-year window to revive civil cases for which the statute of limitations has long expired.

They told the committee that the bill is about receiving an overdue apology, getting justice, restoring self-respect, and publicly exposing accused members of the clergy. But they also admit that sometimes it's about money.

Posted by kshaw at November 23, 2005 06:49 AM