Vitale Statement on Clergy Abuse inside the Catholic Church

Senator Joseph F. Vitale, D-Middlesex, hears testimony during today’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on S-1, legislation that would establish marriage equality in New Jersey.  The bill was released from the Committee with a vote of 8-4, along party lines.  The bill now heads to the full Senate for consideration.

TRENTON Senator Joseph Vitale (D-Middlesex) issued the following statement on the recent allegations against the Catholic Church for silencing victims of sexual abuse, as well as, the creation of Attorney General Gurbir Grewal’s task force to investigate clergy abuse in the state of New Jersey:

“Since the announcement of the Attorney General’s creation of a task force and his plans to empanel a grand jury to investigate clergy abuse in the state of New Jersey, many victims have reached out to my office to ask what they can do to help.

“First, I want to make sure all victims of clergy abuse are calling the clergy abuse hotline set up by the Attorney General.

“As victims have been reaching out, several have asked if they are able to report their abuse if they have signed a non-disclosure or confidentiality agreement with the church and their abuser.  Technically the answer would be no.

“However – I am calling on the Church to release all of these victims from their agreements.  If the Church is truly open and cooperative in this investigation, they would not want anything to hinder the process and prevent the truth from coming out.”

The New Jersey Clergy Abuse Hotline is (855) 363-6548.