Sunday, December 19, 2010

No settlement
No Settlement Between Abuse Victims and Archdiocese
By Shelley Walcott

MILWAUKEE - Settlement talks between the Archdiocese of Milwaukee and 24 plaintiffs in this clergy sex abuse case have reached a stalemate.

In a letter posted on the Archdiocesan website, Archbishop Jerome Listecki said plaintiff's lawyers rejected a $4.6 million dollar settlement. But a spokesperson for abuse survivors says money is not their motivation.

Peter Isley, director of the midwest chapter of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests is calling for the public posting of offenders' names, the release of files on abusive priests, and signed certified letters from every priest and deacon saying that they have not molested children.

In an interview with TODAY'S TMJ4, Archbishop Listecki said the demands have been met: "There is no priest who has a substantiated allegation against him who is functioning in any way in any ministry in the Archdiocese."

But Isley wants to talk to the Archbishop directly: "We're here today to urge the Archbishop to go back into talks with these victims and their attorney."

The victims in this case accuse the Archdiocese of defrauding them, by moving offender priests from parish to parish, without letting families know about their past abuses.

The archbishop says they will work to reach a settlement, ahead of any trial: "Well certainly a part of me, as both a priest, and a Catholic and as a bishop, I'm appalled by those actions that have happened."

And members of SNAP say this process could go on for some time. They say they will take this case to trial if they need to.

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