Tags: Child Abuse

The confessional shouldn’t shield child abuse from reporting

The confessional shouldn’t shield child abuse from reporting

Posted: Wed, 16 Aug 2017 by Keith Porteous Wood

The Australian abuse commission is right not to exempt the confessional from reporting obligations, and its rigour should provide a model to reverse the backsliding already all too clear in the UK, argues Keith Porteous Wood.

Should priests be legally bound... Read More »

Tags: Child Abuse, Catholic Church, Australia

Newcastle: what's faith got to do with it?

Newcastle: what's faith got to do with it?

Posted: Thu, 10 Aug 2017 by Yasmin Rehman

A group of mainly Muslim men has been convicted for sexual abuse in another British city. Amid a predictable response, Yasmin Rehman says child protection does not require the involvement of faith groups or 'community leaders'.

Rotherham, Rochdale, Oxford,... Read More »

Tags: Islam, Child Abuse, Secularism, Multiculturalism, Faith groups

Church of England’s links with insurer undermines justice for survivors of clergy abuse

Church of England’s links with insurer undermines justice for survivors of clergy abuse

Posted: Wed, 26 Jul 2017 by Keith Porteous Wood

Anglican abuse victims believe the Church's close links with its insurer results in lower settlements to victims. NSS executive director Keith Porteous Wood thinks they've got a point, and offers solutions to put things right.

An insurance company connected... Read More »

Tags: Church & State, Church of England, Child Abuse

The Church can’t be allowed to carry on marking its own homework

The Church can’t be allowed to carry on marking its own homework

Posted: Sun, 25 Jun 2017 by Richard Scorer

The Church concealed evidence of criminality and colluded to protect an abusive bishop. Only external oversight will guarantee that church safeguarding practices comply with secular standards, argues Richard Scorer.

With the publication of the Gibb report the... Read More »

Tags: Church & State, Child Abuse, George Carey

The Catholic Church’s abuse scandal shows no sign of abating

The Catholic Church’s abuse scandal shows no sign of abating

Posted: Mon, 15 May 2017 by Richard Scorer

After forty years the Catholic Church is still more interested in protecting itself and its clerical culture than in truly eradicating child abuse, writes Richard Scorer.

"Organisational culture is a powerful force that guides decisions and actions. Leaders... Read More »

Tags: Catholic Church, Scotland, Child Abuse

Who is running Ireland – the Government or the Church?

Who is running Ireland – the Government or the Church?

Posted: Mon, 27 Mar 2017 by Keith Porteous Wood

The reach and power of the Catholic Church has waned considerably in recent years in Ireland. But there are troubling signs that its undue influence over the country is returning, writes Keith Porteous Wood.

It is difficult to envisage now, but when the UK... Read More »

Tags: Catholic Church, Ireland, Child Abuse

Mass grave full of children's remains at Catholic home reveals atrocities on a massive scale

Mass grave full of children's remains at Catholic home reveals atrocities on a massive scale

Posted: Tue, 07 Mar 2017 by Keith Porteous Wood

With the latest revelations about human remains in an Irish Mother and Baby home, Keith Porteous Wood, executive director of the National Secular Society, seeks answers about how such atrocities could have happened on such a scale, and what can be done now.... Read More »

Tags: Catholic Church, Child Abuse, Ireland

Religious privilege undermines abuse victims’ access to justice

Religious privilege undermines abuse victims’ access to justice

Posted: Mon, 22 Aug 2016 by Richard Scorer

Richard Scorer, a specialist child abuse lawyer at Slater & Gordon draws attention to organisations seeking more lenient treatment over child abuse-connected matters because they are religious and makes the case for no concessions being given.

Which is... Read More »

Tags: Child Abuse, Childrens rights & welfare, Catholic Church, Jehovah Witnesses

Church documents expose an even bigger cover-up than suspected in the Peter Ball case

Church documents expose an even bigger cover-up than suspected in the Peter Ball case

Posted: Tue, 19 Jul 2016 by Richard Scorer

The recent release of more internal Church of England documents relating to the Peter Ball case exposes an even bigger cover-up than previously suspected, writes specialist abuse lawyer Richard Scorer.

To recap: Peter Ball was a prominent Church of England... Read More »

Tags: Church of England, Child Abuse, George Carey

Religious belief is no barrier to criminality

Religious belief is no barrier to criminality

Posted: Thu, 09 Jun 2016 by Alistair McBay

A spate of media reports have suggested that criminals convicted of sex abuse feigned their religion. NSS Vice-President Alistair McBay argues that the media shouldn't seek to protect religion from criticism by misrepresenting these cases.

A disturbing new... Read More »

Tags: Religion & Belief, Child Abuse

Bishop Ball case: Questions for Lord Carey

Bishop Ball case: Questions for Lord Carey

Posted: Mon, 11 Jan 2016 by Richard Scorer

With the release of some of the letters written in support of Bishop Ball during the 1992-1993 police investigation, particularly those written by prominent people, we're starting to see more clearly how Ball was protected, writes legal specialist on child... Read More »

Tags: Church of England, Child Abuse

Damning details emerge about establishment cover-up of Anglican sex abuse

Damning details emerge about establishment cover-up of Anglican sex abuse

Posted: Mon, 04 Jan 2016 by Keith Porteous Wood

New revelations about the extent of the letter-writing campaign to help disgraced bishop Peter Ball escape charges raise urgent questions about the extent of the establishment cover-up, writes Keith Porteous Wood.

Former Bishop of Gloucester Peter Ball was... Read More »

Tags: Church of England, Child Abuse

Peter Ball sex abuse case: 20 questions that must be answered

Peter Ball sex abuse case: 20 questions that must be answered

Posted: Wed, 07 Oct 2015 by Keith Porteous Wood

Any genuine inquiry into the handling of allegations of child sex abuse by Bishop Peter Ball must answer key questions about alleged cover-ups by the Church, police and CPS, argues Keith Porteous Wood

The National Secular Society has been closely monitoring... Read More »

Tags: Child Abuse, Church of England, George Carey

Catholic hierarchy stand by while nuns’ orders seek to obstruct justice for their abuse victims

Catholic hierarchy stand by while nuns’ orders seek to obstruct justice for their abuse victims

Posted: Mon, 06 Jul 2015 by Keith Porteous Wood

Following the failed attempt to obstruct the historic child abuse inquiry in Scotland, Keith Porteous Wood exposes the continuing reluctance of the Catholic Church to face up to and pay for its crimes.

Two orders of nuns have sought and failed to frustrate... Read More »

Tags: Catholic Church, Child Abuse

Why did the CPS abandon investigation into Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor?

Why did the CPS abandon investigation into Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor?

Posted: Thu, 19 Mar 2015 by Alistair McBay

As the full scale of the British Establishment's cover-up of child sex abuse becomes apparent, Alistair McBay argues it is time for the Crown Prosecution Service to make public its reasons for dropping the investigation into Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor... Read More »

Tags: Catholic Church, Child Abuse

Religion “mustn't cause violence”

Religion “mustn't cause violence”

Posted: Wed, 10 Sep 2014 by Alistair McBay

Both media commentators and politicians seem keen to claim religion as a cause for good deeds but determined not to acknowledge it as a contributing factor to bad ones, argues Alistair McBay.

An article in the Scotsman in May by Joyce McMillan ran with the... Read More »

Tags: Community Cohesion, Child Abuse, Scotland

Pope’s zero tolerance pledge on child abuse is not enough

Pope’s zero tolerance pledge on child abuse is not enough

Posted: Mon, 23 Jun 2014 by David McClenaghan

Words are not enough: David McClenaghan argues that if the Church wants to deal with its record on child abuse it must root out both the offenders and enablers.

The church must not only root out offenders but also those who have allowed crimes to happen by... Read More »

Tags: Catholic Church, Child Abuse

The English Catholic Church and the Sex Abuse Crisis

The English Catholic Church and the Sex Abuse Crisis

Posted: Wed, 19 Mar 2014 by Richard Scorer

In England, Catholic leaders have fostered the impression that the English church has been relatively scandal-free, and that such problems as did exist were eliminated by the Nolan reforms. A new book by Richard Scorer, head of the abuse unit at Slater &... Read More »

Tags: Catholic Church, Child Abuse, Reviews

Pope's first year of papacy has been a failure on child abuse

Pope's first year of papacy has been a failure on child abuse

Posted: Thu, 13 Mar 2014 by Keith Porteous Wood

This week marks the first anniversary of the election of Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina as Pope Francis. But as far as far as child abuse is concerned, it's just business as usual at the Vatican – but with better PR, argues Keith Porteous... Read More »

Tags: Catholic Church, Child Abuse

Vatican’s attack on its critics is a familiar tactic

Vatican’s attack on its critics is a familiar tactic

Posted: Fri, 07 Feb 2014 by David Clohessy

After hearing the UN's scathing attack on its child abuse record, the Vatican's counter-attack against its critics is a familiar tactic, argues David Clohessy

Inadvertently, by their comments over the past day, Vatican officials are essentially proving what... Read More »

Tags: Catholic Church, Child Abuse, United Nations

Catholic cognitive dissonance: Overlooking evil

Catholic cognitive dissonance: Overlooking evil

Posted: Thu, 23 Jan 2014 by Terry Sanderson

The UN's recent examination of the Holy See presented yet more evidence of the Catholic Church's responsibility for, and cover-up of, child abuse. Yet the Catholic majority remains persistently silent, argues Terry Sanderson.

After the drubbing over child abuse... Read More »

Tags: Child Abuse, Catholic Church

Will the UN finally bring the Vatican to account for its child abuse crimes?

Will the UN finally bring the Vatican to account for its child abuse crimes?

Posted: Thu, 11 Jul 2013 by Keith Porteous Wood

As a United Nations Committee on children's rights confronts the Vatican on its abysmal record on clerical paedophilia and criminal cover-ups, Keith Porteous Wood describes his role in bringing the Holy See to account.

Hardly a month passes without a further... Read More »

Tags: Child Abuse, Pope, Catholic Church

Joseph Ratzinger’s failed papacy may have fatally undermined the Vatican

Joseph Ratzinger’s failed papacy may have fatally undermined the Vatican

Posted: Mon, 11 Feb 2013 by Terry Sanderson

And so we are to see an end to the rule of Joseph Ratzinger at the Vatican. At such times it is usual to break out into a chorus of "Ding, Dong the Witch is Dead" from the Wizard of Oz, but we fear that Ratzinger's successor will be as bad, if not worse, than... Read More »

Tags: Catholic Church, Pope, Child Abuse

Murdoch no match for Benedict in the 'unfit to govern' stakes

Murdoch no match for Benedict in the 'unfit to govern' stakes

Posted: Fri, 04 May 2012 by Alistair McBay

I have been particularly exasperated in the last few days, in common with many others I'm sure, as a result of the unfolding scandal at the Leveson enquiry. Like me, you may be astounded at the extent to which the British Government has plumbed new depths... Read More »

Tags: Catholic Church, Child Abuse

Child brides and licensed rape

Child brides and licensed rape

Posted: Tue, 03 Apr 2012 by Tessa Kendall

Women in the UK are being forced to get married with threats and violence. Children under the legal age of consent for marriage or sex are also being forced to marry - and most of them are girls.


Four hundred children were helped by the government's Forced... Read More »

Tags: Sharia, Child Abuse, Forced Marriage