Although no financial compensation can mend the wounds of sexual assault, the Archdiocese of New York has established a fund to compensate those who have been abused in the past by priests and deacons.
From 1950 to 2002, the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York received 136 different complaints of people who claimed that they were sexually assaulted by 49 priests and deacons. Many of these complaints were from individuals who, at the time of the assault, were only children. Since then, about 70 more people have come forward, bringing the total number of individuals to about 200. In October 2016, the Archdiocese established the Independent Reconciliation and Compensation Program (IRCP) to compensate victims of sexual abuse from members of the clergy. It is to be noted that this is not a lawsuit, rather an independent compensation and relief program. It is headed by Kenneth Feinberg, a man who’s experience running compensation funds includes the funds for victims of 9/11, the Boston Marathon bombing, and the Orlando shooting at Pulse.
The program is currently in Phase I. This phase is designed to compensate victims who have already come forward and contacted the Church about the assault committed against them. So far, only 46 of 200 eligible victims of sexual assault have enrolled. These remaining victims have no other way to obtain compensation, given that New York’s statute of limitations prevents most of the victims from filing lawsuits against the Church. The remaining victims that have already come forward to the Church have until January 31, 2017, to recover their financial relief.
Phase II of the program involves the survivors who have not yet contacted the Church about the abuse that they suffered. Starting on February 1, 2017, these survivors may come forward and enroll in the program.
No dollar value can repair the damage incurred by sexual assault, especially against children. These funds will allow victims to secure financial compensation to help get their life on track though. If you or a loved one survived a sexual assault committed by a member of the Archdiocese of New York clergy, please contact Attorney George Pressly at 1-800-631-6234.Article Type: Investigation