Catholic Church Pays Sexual Abuse Settlement in CA, Removes Priest in WA
In a win for victims of clergy abuse, the Archdiocese of San Francisco reached a settlement Friday in the case against Joseph Pritchard for abuse committed while he was a priest at St. Martin of Tours in San Jose. The archdiocese will pay $16 million to 12 people who were sexually abused by Pritchard in the 1970s.
Just last month, the Archdiocese of San Francisco agreed to pay $21 million to 15 abuse victims in another settlement, with 10 of the victims in this case also abused by Pritchard. One lawsuit is still pending against Pritchard, and the Catholic Church still faces a host of lawsuits against other priests in both San Francisco and Oakland.
In Seattle, Archbishop Alexander Brunett announced Monday that the Vatican has approved the removal of yet another priest for committing child sexual abuse. The Vaticanís Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith has agreed to the removal of James Gandrau, a retired Seattle priest and editor of the Catholic Northwest Progress, according to the Associated Press.
Media Resources: The Associated Press 7/11/05; Seattle Post Intelligencer 7/12/05; San Francisco Gate 7/10/05; Mercury News 7/9/05
10/30/2014 Medication Abortion Access Threatened by Oklahoma Court Ruling - An Oklahoma state district court judge has refused to block a state law restricting medication abortion, clearing the way for the law to go into affect on November 1.
The Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice, together with a local abortion clinic in Tulsa, challenged HB 2684 in September, arguing that the law was an unconstitutional restriction on non-surgical abortion in the earliest weeks of pregnancy. . . .
10/30/2014 UPS Switches Pregnant Worker Policy Ahead of Supreme Court Case - The United Parcel Service (UPS) is changing its policy on light duty assignments for pregnant workers, even though the company will stand by its refusal to extend accommodations to a former employee in an upcoming Supreme Court case.
UPS announced on Monday in a memo to employees, and in a brief filed with the US Supreme Court, that the company will begin offering temporary, light-duty positions to pregnant workers on January 1, 2015. . . .
10/30/2014 North Dakota Medical Students Speak Out Against Measure 1 - Medical students at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences are asking North Dakotans to vote no on Measure 1, a personhood measure on the state ballot this fall.
The students issued published a letter in the Grand Forks Herald stating that they opposed Measure 1 in part because they are against "the government's taking control of the personal health care decisions of its citizens." Nearly 60 UND School of Medicine students signed the letter, citing concerns over the "very broad and ambiguous language" used in the proposed amendment, which has no regard for serious and life-threatening medical situations such as ectopic pregnancies.
Measure 1 would change the North Dakota state constitution to create an "inalienable right to life" for humans "at any stage of development" - including the moment of fertilization and conception. . . .