Friday, February 27, 2009

Victims criticize Dolan over clergy abuse cases

While Archbishop Timothy Dolan has been credited with reaching out to victims of abuse by the clergy, some charge he hasn't gone nearly far enough.

As a child, Peter Isely says he was raped by a Catholic priest in Milwaukee.

And in his eyes, Archbishop Timothy Dolan hasn't done enough to address the issue of sexual abuse during his time in the city.

"He is also going to leave for New York without disciplining senior management of the archdiocese who covered up sex crimes in this archdiocese for over 30 years," said Isely.

Isely is the director of the Survivors Network of Those Abused By Priests, or SNAP.

The organization says over the last three decades, 60 to 70 clergy members have sexually assaulted children in Milwaukee.

The group also says Dolan knows who many of them are.

"He sort of pushed it off to leave it to the next person. He has done some things around this issue that are disconcerting. He has not reported to police priests who have sexually assaulted children who were subsequently arrested and convicted," said Isely.

A spokesperson for the Archdiocese of Milwaukee says Archbishop Dolan has done a lot to protect the children and the community.

"He posted the names of clergy members who have substantiated allegations of sexual abuse on our website. He did that in 2004 and we update that list as necessary," said Julie Wolf, Communications Director, Archdiocese of Milwaukee.

Wolf also says Dolan started a program called "Safeguarding All of Gods Children".

"We have trained between 35,000 and 40,000 adults in keeping our children safe. We are talking about teachers in our schools, religious eduction staff in our parishes and volunteers, coaches. Priests as well," said Wolf.

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(Source: CTHN)