National Catholic Reporter
One request is to extend zero tolerance coverage, including bishops
Apr 18, 2018
by Brian Roewe
A Catholic watchdog group is challenging the U.S. bishops to make "substantial revisions" to their nearly two-decade-old policies regarding sexual abuse of minors, and to include abuse survivors and the laity in the process.
Among seven reforms to the guiding documents — the 2002 Charter for the Protection of Young People, or the Dallas Charter, and the Essential Norms for Diocesan/Eparchial Policies Dealing with Allegations of Sexual Abuse of Minors by Priests or Deacons — proposed by the Catholic Whistleblowers are:
* extending its zero tolerance policy regarding sexual abuse to any cleric, religious or church employee, including bishops complicit with abuse;
* posting to diocesan websites the names of any person affiliated with a diocese with substantial abuse allegations against them;
* and working with state legislators in every state to reform statutes of limitations laws.
The Catholic Whistleblowers, a group of priests, religious and laypeople who support abuse survivors and in several cases reported instances of abuse, outlined their requests in a letter dated April 1, Easter Sunday, and addressed to Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. Copies of the letter were also sent to Archbishop Christophe Pierre, apostolic nuncio to the U.S., and all American bishops, both active and retired.