SNAP: Put survivor on Hope and Healing board

Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio, April 29, 2017

The world’s largest network of priest sex abuse survivors says a program to help Guam clergy abuse victims should have an abuse survivor on its board.

“To claim to know what survivors want and need in a ‘Hope and Healing’ program without having a survivor on the board is a bit patronizing,” said Joelle Casteix, volunteer western regional director for the St. Louis-based Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, or SNAP. “Survivors are the ones who truly know how they can be helped the best.”

Hope and Healing Guam is a program initiated and funded by, but independent of, the Archdiocese of Agana. Its goal is to provide professional counseling, treatment, spiritual healing, compensation and justice to clergy sex abuse victims. The initial funding for the program is $1 million.

Alicia Limtiaco, former U.S. Attorney for Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands, chairs the program’s board. Six other members will be named in the weeks ahead. The board will review and evaluate claims by each person accusing Guam clergy of sex abuse. Counseling and treatment has started for those who call the program’s hotline, 1-888-649-5288.

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