The Catholic Bishops of Canada have launched a national, bilingual online site to report sexual misconduct, either committed or covered by the diocese. According to a statement by the bishop published in Ottawa, the website is a “direct response” to Pope Francis’ request for “one or more public, stable and easily accessible reporting options”. This is another step to combat abuse.
The statement said that BishopportingSystems.ca’s website provides victims with a secure and confidential platform to report sexual abuse or cover up by any active or retired Canadian bishop. The reporting platform introduced additional accountability for church leadership in Canada.
Examination by “Bishop Auditor”
As soon as a report is received, it will be examined by the “Bishop Auditor”. Usually it will be an archbishop or metropolis responsible for the area in which the accused bishop is active. If the charge is against an archbishop or a metropolis, the report goes to a pope representative, it is said. The expert will submit an assessment to the Vatican with a request to initiate an investigation. A bishop will then be authorized to investigate and report back within 90 days. If the accused bishop is found guilty, the Vatican will take disciplinary measures.
“This system puts victims’ concerns first and aims to remove the many barriers that prevent abuse from being exposed,” said Delphine Coleen-Vezina, teacher at McGill University, Montreal Trauma. The Canadian Bishops initiative helps with “healing and recovery of abusers”. experts say.
(kna – mg)
Devoted web advocate. Bacon scholar. Internet lover. Passionate twitteraholic. Unable to type with boxing gloves on. Lifelong beer fanatic.