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Liability For Abuse In Aboriginal Resident Schools


Morgan

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There's an interesting case before the Supreme Court. What do you think will be the decision?

It involves judging the "deep pockets" liability for the sexual abuse of male students by a priest at an aboriginal residence school run by a partnership of the Cdn. gov't and by the Catholic diocese. But the plaintiffs want the Catholic Church of Rome held liable, not just the local diocese.

If the decision is yes, it could hold the Catholic Church open to lawsuits from victims in other countries as well because this would be a precedent in international case law.

If the judges say no, then it's the Cdn. gov't which will be the "deep pockets."

IMO, the CBC news staff is rather transparent about how they want this case to go.

Top court reserves judgment on Catholic Church/ Cdn Gov't liability in aborginal abuse cases, CBC News, Jan.16/04

If the Supreme Court rules that the Catholic Church cannot be held liable for damages because it is not incorporated, the federal government could be on the hook for big money in more than 11,000 other lawsuits.

About 60 per cent of them involve aboriginal residential schools that were operated by the Government of Canada in partnership with the Roman Catholic Church.

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As much as I really don't want the taxpayers to have to pay for this, it cannot realistically be blamed on the supranational RC Church. I have doubts that the Pope commanded that priest to do whatever he did....

But seriously, it should be the priest who pays, and if he's dead or whatever, then the case should be dropped. Mental anguish and whatever other crap is cited in the lawsuit should have a statute of limitations. Sure, go after the priest for abuse if you can, in criminal court. Which they have, and they've won.

But if the priest can't pay the lawsuit, the court says, sorry fellas... we don't owe you anything, the government don't owe you nothin, and the church at large don't owe you nothin neither.

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Dear Morgan,

Sexual abuse and the church are indeed a touchy (sic) subject. It is the church that represented the trust which was betrayed. If one were 'abused' by, say an employee at McDonalds, I guarantee the corporation would be sued, and not the individual. The individual could be tried for the crime, but for litigation purposes it would be the corporation that was 'delinquent' regarding insuring the safety of the customer.

For aboriginals, it is a different ballgame altogether. They were forced to attend church operated schools. The children were often forcibly removed from their homes, under the auspices of the church, and subsequently had no choice in the matter.

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It is the church that represented the trust which was betrayed. If one were 'abused' by, say an employee at McDonalds, I guarantee the corporation would be sued, and not the individual. The individual could be tried for the crime, but for litigation purposes it would be the corporation that was 'delinquent' regarding insuring the safety of the customer.

The Micky D's analogy only applies if it happened when the person was acting as an employee. Scince Priests are always priests the case is true as you state. As for the individual, yes. You go after him and have him put in jail then take the organisation for restitution. Both should go hand in hand.

For aboriginals, it is a different ballgame altogether. They were forced to attend church operated schools. The children were often forcibly removed from their homes, under the auspices of the church, and subsequently had no choice in the matter.

Exactly, the Canadian Government is responsible.

it cannot realistically be blamed on the supranational RC Church. I have doubts that the Pope commanded that priest to do whatever he did....

I wouldn't be too sure that the Pope is blamless. He is the head of it all. If an SUV has problems, like exploding when the left turn signal is used it is the CEO that ultimitly is responsible. I know he didn't assemble the part but, if it wasn't being done right, he either should have done it himself properly, or sent another to do it right. It is his responsibility to ensure that all his people are doing their job right. Hence, the Pope is directly to blame for it. A harmless old gentle man he is not.

A financial kick in the pants is what these people need to make sure they don't walk over all like they have. If the Canadian government had a part to play (which they did) then they should pay as well for the same reasons.

They threw these poor people to the wolves and never bothered to do proper followup. That is BS.

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