Skip to comments.CONNECTICUT BILL GIVES TEACHERS A PASS (omits prosecution of public school teachers!)
Posted on 04/13/2010 3:25:48 PM PDT by Mrs. Don-o
Catholic League president Bill Donohue points out why HB 5473, a bill in Connecticut that eliminates the statute of limitations for childhood sexual abuse claims, is inherently discriminatory:
Just as we saw with anti-Catholics in Colorado and New York, the "let's-get-the-Church" gang is in full gear in Connecticut. None of those supporting this legislation is interested in combating child sexual abuse: if they were, they would not give public institutions a pass. As it stands, this bill will do absolutely nothing to bring relief to those who have been previously abused by a public school employee.
As is the case in other states, public employees enjoy sovereign immunity from such claims and cannot be sued for damages unless a bill specifically authorizes it. Accordingly, the Catholic League calls the bill's sponsors' bluff: make it inclusive of all institutions, public as well as private, or pull it.
It is hardly surprising that we have heard nothing from the teachers' unions and all the other lobbyists for the public schools. They know that if the statute of limitations is eliminated in cases of childhood sexual abuse that took place in the schools, many former administrators and teachersto say nothing of current school districtswould be forced to face the fire. Justice demands, however, that they suffer the same fate of those in private institutions. Either that, or stop with the grandstanding and withdraw this discriminatory bill altogether.
Contact the bills sponsor: Beth.Bye@cga.ct.gov
Thought you might be interested.
Schools cut secret deals with abusive teachers
They call it passing the trash, and its a common policy that lets child abusers resign and move to another district
A 2004 study points out that sexual abuse is 100 times higher in the public school system than in the Catholic, world-wide church:
Forgotten Study: Abuse in School 100 Times Worse than by Priests
By James Tillman and John Jalsevac
WASHINGTON, DC, April 1, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) In the last several weeks such a quantity of ink has been spilled in newspapers across the globe about the priestly sex abuse scandals, that a casual reader might be forgiven for thinking that Catholic priests are the worst and most common perpetrators of child sex abuse.
But according to Charol Shakeshaft, the researcher of a little-remembered 2004 study prepared for the U.S. Department of Education, “the physical sexual abuse of students in schools is likely more than 100 times the abuse by priests.”
After effectively disappearing from the radar, Shakeshafts study is now being revisited by commentators seeking to restore a sense of proportion to the mainstream coverage of the Church scandal.
According to the 2004 study the most accurate data available at this time indicates that nearly 9.6 percent of students are targets of educator sexual misconduct sometime during their school career.
Educator sexual misconduct is woefully under-studied, writes the researcher. We have scant data on incidence and even less on descriptions of predators and targets. There are many questions that call for answers.
In an article published on Monday, renowned Catholic commentator George Weigel referred to the Shakeshaft study, and observed that The sexual and physical abuse of children and young people is a global plague in which Catholic priests constitute only a small minority of perpetrators.
While Weigel observes that the findings of Shakeshafts study do nothing to mitigate the harm caused by priestly abuse, or excuse the clericalism and fideism that led bishops to ignore the problem, they do point to a gross imbalance in the level of scrutiny given to it, throwing suspicion on the motives of the news outlets that are pouring their resources into digging up decades-old dirt on the Church.
The narrative that has been constructed is often less about the protection of the young (for whom the Catholic Church is, by empirical measure, the safest environment for young people in America today) than it is about taking the Church down,” he writes.
Weigel observes that priestly sex abuse is a phenomenon that spiked between the mid-1960s and the mid-1980s but seems to have virtually disappeared, and that in recent years the Church has gone to great lengths to punish and remove priestly predators and to protect children. The result of these measures is that six credible cases of clerical sexual abuse in 2009 were reported in the U.S. bishops annual audit, in a Church of some 65,000,000 members.
Despite these facts, however, the sexual abuse story in the global media is almost entirely a Catholic story, in which the Catholic Church is portrayed as the epicenter of the sexual abuse of the young.
Outside of the Church, Shakeshaft is not alone in highlighting the largely unaddressed, and unpublicized problem of child sex abuse in schools. Sherryll Kraizer, executive director of the Denver-based Safe Child Program, told the Colorado Gazette in 2008 that school employees commonly ignore laws meant to prevent the sexual abuse of children.
I see it regularly, Kraizer said. There are laws against failing to report, but the law is almost never enforced. Almost never.
What typically happens is youll have a teacher whos spending a little too much time in a room with one child with the door shut, Kraizer explained. Another teacher sees it and reports it to the principal. The principal calls the suspected teacher in and says Dont do that, instead of contacting child protective services.
Before you know it, the teacher is driving the student home. A whole series of events will unfold, known to other teachers and the principal, and nobody contacts child services before its out of control. You see this documented in records after it eventually ends up in court.
In an editorial last week, The Gazette revisited the testimony of Kraizer in the context of the Church abuse scandal coverage, concluding that the much larger crisis remains in our public schools today, where children are raped and groped every day in the United States.
The media and others must maintain their watchful eye on the Catholic Church and other religious institutions, wrote The Gazette, But its no less tragic when a child gets abused at school.
In 2004, shortly after the Shakeshaft study was released, Catholic League President William Donohue, who was unavailable for an interview for this story, asked, Where is the media in all this?
Isnt it news that the number of public school students who have been abused by a school employee is more than 100 times greater than the number of minors who have been abused by priests? he asked.
All those reporters, columnists, talking heads, attorneys general, D.A.s, psychologists and victims groups who were so quick on the draw to get priests have a moral obligation to pursue this issue to the max. If they dont, theyre a fraud.
Yes I am interested and thanks. I wonder whether the statue of limitations would apply to the teachers as individuals or just the school district or both.
Something I’ll look into, but it makes little sense to me that a shelter from the law is constructed just for teachers.
Still, most all of these teacher-pedophile situations involve a teacher doing stuff OFF PREMISES. Don’t quite see where the school is involved except to provide a place of introduction. In that light why would sovereign immunity extend to what a teacher does in her spare time away from school schtupping the football players.
I wasn't aware of that. Interesting. Do you have a link?
Sovereign immunity is a long established rule based upon the English idea that the king can do no wrong.
The ON PREMISES stuff is rare. What you have much more often is the situation Newt Gingrich found himself in with the woman he eventually married as his first wife ~ just out in an automobile somewhere else at night.