Confidential talks and offers of help

Confidential talks and offers of help

The Cathedral St. Salvator to Fulda © LaMiaFotografia (shutterstock)

The diocese Fulda wants to finance payments for victims of sexual abuse further not with church tax means. Instead, the money should come from the episcopal chair, as before, or – if possible – from perpetrators who are still alive.

The church tax council, as the responsible body, has confirmed that in the future, too, church taxes will generally not be used for payments to compensate or recognize the suffering of victims of sexual abuse, the diocese reported.

In addition, according to its own information, the diocese of Fulda has now appointed two independent contact persons for victims of sexual abuse. The social worker Ute Sander and the psychotherapist Stefan Zierau would be available to those affected for discussions and mediate further offers of help if desired. Accordingly, they are also responsible for proceedings concerning recognition payments.

New trial in the works

Catholic bishops in Germany are currently discussing a new procedure for compensation payments to victims of clergy sexual abuse. A working group proposed two models in September: a flat rate of about 300.000 euros per victim, or a graduated process in which, depending on the severity of the case, between 40.000 and 400.000 euros could be paid.

Funding is unclear. Most recently, several dioceses had opposed recourse to church tax funds, including Rottenburg-Stuttgart, Freiburg, Mainz and Limburg. Further steps for a nationwide regulation to be presented at the end of January.

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