NH Diocese Agrees to Multi-Million Dollar Settlement
A multi-million settlement was reached yesterday, curtailing what could have been an arduous legal battle for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Manchester. The $6.4 million settlement - to be distributed starting in December among 61 plaintiffs based on the type and severity of priest sex abuse-- brings the diocese's total cost to $15.5 million for resolving 176 cases since the scandal broke last year, according to the New York Times. Church officials told the Times the settlement funds will not come from schools and parishes or property sales but rather insurance and future reserves.
Last December, faced with criminal violations, the diocese became the first to settle, admitting that it failed to protect children from pedophilic priests. Under terms of that agreement, the Manchester diocese must abide by state child abuse reporting laws and immediately notify authorities of all suspicions, as well as undergo yearly compliance audits, and increase personnel training and education programs.
Media Resources: NY Times 5/23/03; Boston Globe 5/23/03; AP 5/23/03; Feminist Daily News Wire