Thursday, December 23, 2010

Church reneges on compensation
Church reneging on Irish compensation payments
A question asked in the Irish parliament has revealed that the Catholic Church has paid only a small fraction of the money it pledged to the State last year to help compensate the victims of clerical sexual abuse.

Just €20m has been paid out of a total €348m pledged following the publication of the Ryan Report. None of the property that was included in the agreement has been handed over. In addition, €26m is still outstanding from a €128m deal that Catholic organisations struck with the State in 2002, which granted them indemnity from having to pay further sums for the compensation of abuse victims.

The Labour Party’s education spokesman Ruairi Quinn, who asked the question, said the delay would hinder support for people who had suffered so horribly at the hands of members of the religious orders and that the public would be disappointed and angered at the slow pace of the payments. “I hope that it does not represent an attempt by the Religious Congregations to renege on the agreement and the Government must now insist the pace of payments and transfers is accelerated, particularly given the horrendous economic problems we are facing.”

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