News & Headlines

Civil registry of sex abusers never used

The Columbus Dispatch, Wednesday March 19, 2014.

There are many tools available only to clergy abuse lawyers. There are many more available to the general public, but one Columbus Dispatch Report suggests some of those tools just aren't being used.

After hearing from numerous victims of sex abuse by priests and seeing about 150 cases involving accusations against leaders in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Cleveland, the North Royalton Republican struggled to tell his colleagues they should support the bill. A year earlier, the Senate had unanimously approved a version of Spada's bill containing a key provision: a one-year window for victims to file a lawsuit alleging child sex abuse that had occurred as long as 35 years earlier. But the House, under then-Speaker Jon Husted and facing heavy pressure from Catholic leaders, stripped out the one-year window to file a lawsuit and replaced it with a civil registry…

It doesn't surprise me, said Barbara Blaine, president of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP), who was among those in 2006 fighting to keep the one-year window to sue instead of the civil registry. It was never set up to be effective from Day One. It was a diversion to make people feel like something would come of it.”

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