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Churches Defend Clergy Loophole in Child Sex Abuse Reporting

posted on September 29, 2022

For the Associated Press, Jason Dearen and Michael Rezendes report that 130 bills that would force clergy to report child sex abuse in confession have all failed to pass. They write, “This loophole has resulted in an unknown number of predators being allowed to continue abusing children for years despite having confessed the behavior to religious officials.” Large religious organizations, including the Catholic and LDS Churches, have been the most outspoken critics of the legislation and have lobbied against the bills across the country. David Finkelhor, the director of the Crimes Against Children Research Center at the University of New Hampshire, said, “They believe that they’re on a divine mission that justifies keeping the name and the reputation of their institution pristine. So the leadership has a strong disincentive to involve the authorities, police or child protection.”

Read at Associated Press