Two Sexual Assaults a Week
A New Report Has Charted about 1,100 Sexual Assaults in Christian Settings over the Past Decade, or Two Per Week on Average since 1996

Aftenposten [Norway]
November 17, 2006

The Church Resource Center against Violence and Sexual Assault handed in their report to the Church Synod on Thursday, newspaper Bergens Tidende reports.

"The first years we focused on assaults on women by men. In recent years we have also seen that men are victims of assault. About 100 of the 1,100 cases we reported concern sexual attacks on men," Center leader Elisabeth Torp told the newspaper.

Torp expressed concern about the trend and said the report made a strong impression on the Synod.

As recently as last week a priest in the Glåmdal area was jailed for assaulting a minor.

Torp believes the offenses are here to stay, even though the church has a policy of zero tolerance.

"I don't believe that there will be fewer assaults in the years to come. Greater openness leads to more incidents becoming known. But we also see that offenders operate in 'cleverer' ways than before," Torp said.

Torp also said that it was more common before to receive complaints from older persons about incidents that occurred long ago, while there is now a pattern of increasingly younger persons coming forward with grievances.


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