February 14, 2006

Sex Abuse Victims Want 2-Year Window To Sue Church


By Colleen Slevin, Associated Press Writer

(AP) DENVER People who said they were abused by Roman Catholic priests as children urged state lawmakers Monday to change the law and give them a two-year window to bring lawsuits against the church.

The church is fighting the proposal because the measure (Senate Bill 143) would only relax the statute of limitations for two years in cases involving private institutions. The Colorado Catholic Conference, which represents the dioceses of Denver, Colorado Springs and Pueblo, says lawmakers are ignoring abuse that has occurred in public schools and other government institutions.

A Senate committee was hearing testimony late Monday.

Sex abuse victims said that the change is needed to both help them come to terms with their abuse and to make the names of clergy they believe could still be molesting children public. They say the church shouldn't be protected by the statute of limitations because the priests worked to make them afraid to speak up about the abuse and their superiors covered up their crimes by shuffling them from parish to parish.

Posted by kshaw at February 14, 2006 07:00 AM