Church creates fund to compensate victims of sexual abuse

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The Portuguese Bishops’ Conference (CEP) has approved the creation of a fund, “with a contribution of solidarity from all dioceses”, to financially compensate victims of sexual abuse within the Catholic Church in Portugal.

The decision was announced today in Fatima at the end of the CEP Plenary Assembly, which determined that these financial compensations will be granted on a “supplementary basis”.

“In order to follow up on this process, the Assembly defined that requests for financial compensation should be submitted to the Vita Group or to the Diocesan Commissions for the Protection of Minors and Vulnerable Adults between June and December 2024,” adds the CEP communiqué distributed at the end of the Plenary Assembly, which has been taking place since Monday.

Church creates fund to compensate victims of sexual abuse

According to the bishops, “an evaluation commission will subsequently determine the amounts of compensation to be awarded”.

“These decisions are part of the path taken by the Church in Portugal. In communion with the suffering of the victims, the Portuguese bishops reaffirm their total commitment to do everything in their power to make reparation and express the wish that this process of welcoming, accompanying and preventing them will be a contribution to the actions of society in general on this issue,” the document adds.

In recent days, Rute Agulhas, coordinator of the Vita Group, said that 20 victims of sexual abuse within the Catholic Church in Portugal have already expressed their desire to be financially compensated for the damage they have suffered.

This organization, created by the Portuguese Episcopal Conference (CEP) following the work of the Independent Commission for the Study of Sexual Abuse of Children in the Catholic Church – which over the course of almost a year validated 512 testimonies of cases that occurred between 1950 and 2022, pointing, by extrapolation, to a minimum number of 4,815 victims – said it had “carried out a total of 56 consultations” and that “more consultations are scheduled for this April”.

Hervé Hubert
Hervé Hubert
Hervé Hubert is a 55-year-old writer and journalist based in Porto, Portugal. Born in France, he brings a unique blend of French and Portuguese perspectives to his work. Education Hervé studied Journalism and Literature at the University of Lyon in France. After completing his studies, he gained valuable experience working with various French media outlets (Portugal France also). Career He worked for several years as a journalist in France before making the move to Portugal. In Porto, he joined the Portugal Pulse team as a staff writer. Skills Hervé specializes in storytelling, investigative journalism, and cultural commentary. He has a flair for capturing complex issues in a relatable way. Personal Life He currently resides in Porto and enjoys the city's rich culture, from Fado music to Francesinha cuisine. Hervé continues to maintain strong ties to his French heritage, often traveling back to France for family visits and cultural exploration. With his unique background and diverse skill set, Hervé Hubert adds a layered, multicultural lens to every story he covers.

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