Monday, February 27, 2012

Light at the end of the bushel

If you had to choose, would you say it's more likely sexual abuse claims have bankrupted our Archdiocese of Milwaukee because in handling this problem:
a) it did everything right; or
b) it did everything wrong.
It says the former in its press release about its request that the Bankruptcy Court modify its confidentiality order.
"Julie Wolf, director of communications, for the Archdiocese of Milwaukee, added, 'If Judge Kelley approves the request and the attorney general chooses to become involved, he will quickly conclude that what the archdiocese has been saying all along is true – the steps taken in the last two decades by the Archdiocese of Milwaukee are a model for others in preventing abuse and creating a safe environment. Our safeguarding policies and procedures have become a blueprint for other institutions that do not require the same level of rigorous training, background checks and preventive programs.'"
If that means the requested modification would be limited to information from the last two decades, Ms. Wolf has imprecisely communicated the reason. Our Archdiocese still appears unable to find any organization willing to admit using its approach as a model.

As long as the issue is before the court, how about releasing the transcripts of the depositions of Archbishop Weakland and Bishop Sklba? If our Archdiocese's handling of this problem has been impeccable, then their testimony could hardly embarrass them.

Update (Feb. 29, 2012 6:00am): Plaintiffs ask to see archdiocese's papers, reports the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. It says our Archdiocese's request was, more precisely, "for permission to compile statistical information about the claims for the state attorney general's office, which has been asked by lawmakers and victim rights advocates to launch an independent investigation into the abuse allegations." Attorneys for a large number of sexual abuse claimants countered by asking the court "to unseal more than 500 claims, with identifying information about victims and previously unidentified suspects redacted; the depositions of Archbishop Rembert Weakland and Bishop Richard Sklba, both retired, and defrocked priest Daniel A. Budzynski; and numerous other documents."

1 comment:

  1. Wondering if a reporter will ever ask the question.