New reporting reveals that over 1,000 cases of sex abuse by priests associated with the Archdiocese of Chicago have been reported to the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services [DCFS] since 2006. Twenty-four new investigations have been launched in response to concerns that those cases were not properly investigated by DCFS.
In 2006, DCFS implemented a policy that required the Archdiocese of Chicago to report suspected cases of sexual abuse involving its priests and employees. The need for this policy arose from the horrific crimes of the notorious Father Daniel McCormack and other priests who sexually abused thousands of children in the Chicago area. (Cherney, 2019).
This 2006 program was designed to:
- Prevent allegations from falling through the cracks
- Stop further child sexual abuse
- Ensure the accused no longer has access to children
- Alert possible employers of potential predators
“At this point, it's not clear exactly what happened with each of the 1,100 cases”
– Marc Smith DCFS Director
“While it is unfortunate that the policy wasn't continued to be monitored and implemented, I have to admit it's not surprising.”
–Bryan Samuels – creator of the 2006 DCFS policy
Thousands of people have been victimized by the Catholic clergy for decades and new victims continue to report claims of sexual abuse. The policies implemented years ago to prevent sexual abuse are not working. It is not too late to come forward and report your claim.
As trial lawyers we have forced the Archdiocese of Chicago to take responsibility for the abuse of hundreds of victims of childhood sexual abuse, and we are proud of our work to get these victims the closure and compensation they deserve. Contact our firm, Hurley, McKenna & Mertz at 312.553.4900 if you need counsel regarding a sexual abuse claim.
Cherney, E. (2019). DCFS probes clergy abuse reports. [online] Digitaledition.chicagotribune.com. Available at: http://digitaledition.chicagotribune.com/infinity/article_share.aspx?guid=7958823b-10bd-4ae3-9978-422397f241e2 [Accessed 19 Sep. 2019].