After having litigated clergy sexual abuse claims in Philadelphia during the past six years on behalf of over 80 survivors, I was anxious to see what all the media hype calling the movie “Spotlight” an early contender for Oscars. Plus, through the nationwide organization SNAP (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests) I had read about and met some of the key players in the movie including survivor Paul Saviano, attorneys Eric MacLeish (see statement before regarding the inaccurate portrayal of him by fellow Boston attorney Carmen Durso) and Mitch Garabedian.
With the exception of the false impression made about Attorney MacLeish, I thought the movie accurately depicts the plight of survivors and the tremendous legal hurdles that the Catholic Church employs to block survivors from receiving justice in the form of recognition of their harms, apologies for the Church’s failure to protect children and compensation for survivors’ injuries.
Rather than tell you about the entire movie, I urge you to go see it yourself. You will be glad you did. And I suspect you will feel stronger about child protection from sexual abuse and the troubles that survivors endure including the struggles of coming forward before the expiration of draconian Statute of Limitation laws like the ones in Pennsylvania that both the legislature and the judiciary refuse to modify. [Read more…]