Norwich Diocese Audit Completed
The Auditor's Report Will Not Be Available until October

By Adam Bowles
Norwich Bulletin [Norwich CT]
Downloaded July 10, 2003

NORWICH -- An audit of the Diocese of Norwich and its policies to protect children was completed Wednesday, but the results won't be available until at least October.

"The audit was a very positive experience for the diocese," Norwich Bishop Michael R. Cote said in a prepared statement Wednesday. "We have cooperated fully with the auditors and we are working daily to ensure the safety of our children and young people."

Three auditors from the Gavin Group of Boston began the audit Monday, assessing how well the diocese is complying with provisions of the "Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People," the church's policy on sexual abuse.

The audit, on behalf of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, included examining records at the diocese and interviewing several people involved in various aspects of child protection policies.

The charter's standards include healing, outreach and reconciliation to victims; response, reporting and investigation of allegations; standards of ministerial conduct, communications policy, safe-environment training programs and background evaluations of church personnel; and ongoing training programs for priests.

A public report on how well the Diocese of Norwich is following the charter will be prepared by the U.S. Bishops' Office for Child and Youth Protection.

Kathleen McChesney, who formerly held the No. 3 post in the FBI, directs the office.

The Norwich report will be included with audit reports of the other 194 dioceses. All audits are expected to be completed by October.


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