Saturday, August 28, 2010

Victims want Catholic officials fired

Victims want Catholic officials fired

They kept quiet about sex misconduct allegations

Suspected teacher was kept on the job for months

State officials disciplined him but parents weren’t told

He had “improper relationship” with high school girl

SNAP to hand out leaflets to parishioners leaving mass

As parishioners leave mass, clergy sex abuse victims and their supporters will hand out fliers about two Catholic school staffers who recently resigned because of a scandal. The leaflets will blast five Toledo Catholic officials who kept quiet for months about suspected sexual misconduct by a parochial teacher (even after state education officials disciplined him).The fliers will also urge Toledo’s bishop to
-- fire each of them,
-- explain and apologize to parents for their recklessness and secrecy, and
-- aggressively seek out other school students and staff who may have seen, suspected or suffered the teacher’s misdeeds or his supervisors’ cover ups, and urge them to call police.

Sunday, Aug. 29, at 11:30 a.m.

Outside Our Lady, Queen of the Most Holy Rosary Cathedral, 2535 Collingwood Blvd. in Toledo, OH (419 244 9575,

Two- three victims of sexual abuse by clerics and their supporters including a Toledo native who founded the support group called SNAP, Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests.

Two weeks ago, a Catholic school counselor resigned his position at a school in Fremont. Starting in October 2009, Toledo Catholic officials secretly investigated him and in March 2010 state officials sanctioned him for "failing to maintain appropriate student-teacher boundaries." Still, a Catholic principal deceitfully urged a public school to rehire him, putting innocent kids at risk of child sex crimes. (That principal, Mike Gabel, also just resigned.)

Kevin Yeckley is a counselor and coach who has admitted “periodically” hugging a girl, hiring her, working “alone for several consecutive Saturdays” with her and telling her “he was . . .having uncomfortable feelings for her.” But SNAP believes the main issue is not Yeckley’s misconduct but that of church and school supervisors who, SNAP feels, endangered kids by keeping quiet for months about Yeckley’s misdeeds. SNAP wants Toledo Bishop Leonard Blaire to fire them.

Church officials admit that in March 2009, the victims told a teacher about what Yeckley said to her but their investigation only started in October, some six or seven months later. (According to The News-Messenger newspaper, “The teacher told assistant principal Deb Streacker, who told Principal Mike Gabel, who told Catholic schools superintendent Jack Altenburger, who told diocesan investigator Frank DiLallo, who met with Yeckley along with Toledo diocesan human resources director Greg Reed.

SNAP feels the case again shows Catholic officials putting their reputations and careers above the well-being of children. SNAP is urging every person – parent, student or staff – who saw or suspected misdeeds by Yeckley to call secular authorities, not church authorities.

No comments: