Cornwall Standard Freeholder
Posted By GREG PEERENBOOM
11 June 2010
CORNWALL — For now, it appears the sex abuse payouts made the province and the local diocese are far short of earlier estimates.
The settlements were made between 1999 and June 2010.
Meanwhile, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Alexandria-Cornwall has paid about $1.25 million, stemming from 16 civil suits, confirmed Bishop Paul-Andre Durocher.
Durocher said the settlements involved 10 priests who were accused of abuse from 1949 to the late 1970s.
A few of these suits also involved the former French Catholic school board of S, D and G and other Catholic religious organizations, which involved brothers.
Durocher did not identify the organizations, citing it was their responsibility to do so.
The Attorney General’s office failed to specify which government departments were responsible, although previous allegations targetted the corrections and probation departments.
The total of $3.5 million is only a fraction of the $70-$100 millon that ex-judge and former MPP Gary Guzzo expects to be shovelled out.
There are, however, still some lawsuits outstanding for the Attorney General.
That’s not the case — unless new cases are launched — with the diocese.
“Over the past years, our insurance companies have been involved in settling (16) lawsuits, often with the help of court-appointed mediators,” Durocher said in a letter to the editor.
“The last of these lawsuits was settled a few weeks ago,” he said, adding the victims’ legal costs were also covered by the diocese.
Unlike the provincial government, Durocher said there are no confidentiality clauses. He left it up to the victims if they wish to come forward and speak about the settlements and/or their experiences.
While the compensation is intended for helping victims recover lost income, caused by any instability, as well as a salve for their suffering, it can be a two-edged sword.
“When they get a settlement or dollar amount, it does not, by itself, provide any resolution in terms of the trauma symptoms and life problems,” said Rick Goodwin, executive director of an Ottawa men’s counselling agency, The Men’s Project.
“I’ve heard stories of victims getting settlements and wind up blowing it up their noses.”
In many cases, Goodwin said, the money isn’t used to seek counselling.
“Usually it works out after (the money’s gone) and they’ve hit rock bottom.”
Goodwin said he would rather see a portion set aside for counselling purposes and no other.
Durocher said the diocese did provide counselling to some victims from an agency while the lawsuit was being negotiated.
However, the cash payout was based partially on the cost of counselling services.
Citizens for Committee Renewal’s Paul Scott agreed the settlement should specify a direct allocation for counselling.
“I suppose it’s up to the (abuse) survivor to get as much money as he can and go with it.
“But it can go pretty fast, and not be of much help to through life.”
(For related letter to the editor, see Page 5.)
Article ID# 2618265
my friend got 23,000 several years ago in some class action settlement.
Then the CBC news reported if the OPP had not destroyed those sex tapes by the parole officer, that hung himself, they would have gotten a cool 2 million apiece….so yeah they got fcked again.
Let me just see if I have this straight…….Guzzo says payouts between 70 to 100 million dollars………The AG’s office and the Diocese say payouts total 3.5 million dollars. Someone is certainly lieing, to me it begs the question……..WHY? IF I were the media, I would be right back on Guzzo’s doorstep asking him how he came up with a figure like that.