In the 1960s, the Catholic Diocese often sent known sex abuse offenders to Native American communities because they knew that people would not speak up. Decades later when they did begin to speak out, they found that justice was elusive.
For example, in the early 2000s, a lawsuit was filed in South Dakota against two Catholic dioceses and several religious orders for abuse that occurred at two Indian schools over four decades. That lawsuit was dismissed by the South Dakota Supreme Court, which ruled that the statute of limitations had long run out. Then in 2018, legislation that would eliminate the statute of limitations in certain child sex abuse cases was turned down by South Dakota Senators. Two sisters that are part of the lawsuit have said that they are not holding out hope. “We’re just forgotten. They’ll drag it out till we’re all old and dead.”
BishopAccountability.org, a massive online database of clergy abuse cases, details hundreds of cases in which the church covered up accusations of abuse by sending problem priests elsewhere. “There is no way to know how many Native American-Alaska Native children have been victimized,” said our own Vito de la Cruz who represents Native American abuse survivors.
Tamaki Law has helped hundreds of abuse survivors throughout the country hold the church accountable. For a free consultation, call us toll-free at 888-971-5672.
Read the full VOANews article: For Native American Clergy Sex Abuse Survivors, Justice is Elusive
Review BishopAccountability.org information on Bankruptcy Protection in the Abuse Crisis.