San Diego bishop announces compensation fund, changes to social media policy
FREE Catholic Classes
Bishop Robert McElroy of San Diego announced Aug. 13 an Independent Compensation Program for victims of sexual abuse, set to begin in September.
San Diego, Calif., (CNA) - He also called on all diocesan employeesâ€" not just those who are mandated reporters under the lawâ€" to contact the appropriate authorities if they "come to a strongly founded belief that a minor is being victimized sexually."
"I would suggest that if you are not a mandated reporter, but come across evidence which points in your mind to the existence of the sexual abuse of a minor either within the life of the Church or in their family or social lives, and you are unsure how to proceed, you consult with one of the experienced mandated reporters at your school, parish or agency to come to clarity on what you should do," the bishop said.
"I would ask those of you here today who are not mandated reporters to keep in mind that both the moral law and the civil law urge you to report known or suspected instances of the sexual abuse of a current minor to child welfare services."
The bishop announced the program and the new policies in front of 2,500-plus employees of the parishes, schools, and organizations in the San Diego diocese. Currently, under a change in California law passed last December, the statute of limitations for sexual abuse is 10 years after the last act or attempted act of sexual assault.
Kevin Eckery, Vice Chancellor of the San Diego diocese, told CNA that the bishopâ€ s call to diocesan employees to alert authorities encompassed all forms of abuse.
"It includes all forms of physical or sexual abuse that might be encountered by church workers at school, in the parish or in the community," he told CNA.
Eckery also clarified that the bishop was encouraging those who suspect abuse to go directly to law enforcement, but also to alert the diocese.
"Mandated reporters under California law are supposed to go directly to law enforcement," he said.
"So it's not a matter of waiting for approval or running it up the chain...for the non-mandated reporters, he was giving them complete license to do the same, to go directly to law enforcement or whatever the proper civil authority is. But in all cases we are anticipating that people will alert us so that we can track these reports at the diocese to make sure everything is followed up on."
Money for the victim compensation fund will come from diocesan funds and insurance; no parish funds will be used, nor money raised through the dioceseâ€ annual appeal, the diocese said.
"Victim/survivors of abuse by a priest of the San Diego diocese will be invited to apply for compensation regardless of when the abuse occurred. Undocumented immigrants may also apply. There will be no statute of limitations," the diocese said in a release announcing the program.
In addition to announcing the compensation program, McElroy also promulgated two new diocesan policies related to social media.
"It will be forbidden for any employee or clergy in the diocese to communicate privately with a specific minor whom he/she has come to know through ministry without copying that minorâ€ s parent or guardian. Moreover, it will be forbidden for any cleric or employee to have any direct interaction on any personal media account with any individual minor whom they have met through their work in the Church," McElroy said.
Eckery said the new social media policy was not a response to any specific incident of inappropriate communication between a diocesan employee and a minor.
"It's more based on a feeling of what's right," he said. "It's really meant to avoid problems, rather than address problems that exist."
"We'll promulgate [the new rules] in written form as soon as we have everybody informed on the software changes, the updates, just so that we don't tell people not to do something before we give them a solution."
The bishop also announced the creation of a Task Force, headed by diocesan Chancellor Marioly GalvĂˇn and Director of Schools John Galvan to "focus upon designing pathways for our local Church to bring to our parents and families a deeper understanding of the pervasiveness, patterns and damaging effects of the sexual abuse of minors."
Copyright 2019 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK
Kentucky Governor Matt Bevinâ s administration has reportedly denied a Planned Parenthood clinic in downtown Louisville its license to ... continue reading
The Diocese of Memphis is supporting a pastor whose staff denied a job to a black housekeeper on the grounds that his dog was racist. The ... continue reading
Ashley Bratcher, lead actress in the pro-life movie "Unplanned," has helped establish a scholarship for women pursing an education ... continue reading
In the 2017 Disney-Pixar movie "Coco," the main character, Miguel, accidentally passes over into the land of the dead on Dia De Los Muertos ... continue reading
Catholic Relief Services is speaking out against a potential reassignment of U.S. funds that Congress appropriated for foreign assistance ... continue reading
by Catholic Online
- After investigation, Memphis bishop defends priest accused of racism
- Daily Reading for Wednesday, August 21st, 2019 HD Video
- Prayer Requests Live for Monday, August 19th, 2019 HD Video
- Law and Justice Party leader praises Polish archbishop for LGBT ...
- St. Bernard of Clairvaux: Saint of the Day for Tuesday, August 20, 2019
- Daily Readings for Tuesday, August 20, 2019
- Kentucky again denies abortion clinic's license
- Daily Reading for Wednesday, August 21st, 2019 HD
- Daily Reading for Tuesday, August 20th, 2019 HD
- Daily Reading for Monday, August 19th, 2019 HD
- NEW COURSE - Confirmation with 'Certificate of Completion' - COMING SOON!
Learn about Catholic world
Inform - Inspire - Ignite
Catholic Online Saints
Your saints explained
Catholic Online Prayers
Prayers for every need
Catholic Online Bible
Complete bible online
Catholic Online News
Your news Catholic eye
Today's bible reading
Products and services we offer
Catholic Online Shopping
Catholic medals, gifts & books
Advertise on Catholic Online
Your ads on catholic.org
Catholic Online Email
Email with Catholic feel
Learn the Catholic way
Catholic Online School
Free Catholic education for all
K-12 & Adult Education Classes
Support Free Education
Tax deductible support Free education
Copyright 2019 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2019 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.
Catholic Online is a Project of Your Catholic Voice Foundation, a Not-for-Profit Corporation. Your Catholic Voice Foundation has been granted a recognition of tax exemption under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Federal Tax Identification Number: 81-0596847. Your gift is tax-deductible as allowed by law.