Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Swiss diocese of Sion criticised for handling of victims of sexual abuse

The hearings of victims of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church were inappropriate in many cases in the diocese of Sion. 

This is the conclusion of an external and independent audit of the diocese's handling of abuse.

According to the report presented on Tuesday, the people surveyed often found the initial reception by a church member to be intimidating and unsupportive.

“This inadequacy of the first direct contact is compounded in particular by an institutional inertia in the processing of dossiers and a lack of proactivity in the follow-up,” said Stéphane Haefliger of Vicario Consulting, the firm commissioned to carry out the audit.

What next after Swiss Catholic Church sexual abuse revelations?

The diocese admitted mistakes and announced an action plan. Among other things, victims of abuse are to be better cared for and communication with them improved.

The report is based on interviews with around 20 victims of abuse and the analysis of around 15 files from the diocese archives.