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Survivors of Sexual Abuse by Clerics Want Statute of Limitations Removed

The Catholic Church has announced a compensation and counseling program for victims of clerical sexual abuse in New Jersey, but survivors want lawmakers to help

Kevin Waldrip says a Newark priest sexually abused him in the 1960s and ruined his life. He wants the Catholic Church to “come clean so people can get on with their lives,” he said.

More than that, Waldrip wants New Jersey lawmakers to approve the Child Victims Act, which would remove the statute of limitations on suing for sexual abuse. Versions of the bill have stalled in the Legislature for years.

On Monday, Cardinal Joseph Tobin announced the Victims Compensation and Counseling Program for New Jersey dioceses “to compensate victims of child sexual abuse whose financial claims are legally barred by New Jersey’s statute of limitations.”

State lawmakers praised the move, but critics charge the church is trying to circumvent the need for a law like the Child Victims Act.

Two months ago, state Attorney General Gurbir Grewal formed a task force with subpoena powers to investigate decades of clergy abuse in New Jersey.

Read the full story on NJTV News Online, a content partner of NJ Spotlight.

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