Victim fund payouts don’t cover non-clergy sex abuse

The Tribune-Review

December 29, 2018

By Jamie Martines

Brother Frank Meder gave the Troy Hill neighborhood kids candy and soda when the old North Catholic High School cafeteria was closed on Saturdays. Sometimes he invited them to look at the stamp collection in his office.

But first, he would molest them, according to one woman and four men whose accounts are detailed in the 2018 Pennsylvania grand jury report.

Brother John Keegan, also a member of the Marianist religious order who worked at North Catholic, was accused of asking male students if he could “examine” their genitals.

He allegedly read the minors explicit scripts and molested them.

Abuse at the hands of these individuals — along with abuse committed by other members of religious orders named throughout the grand jury report — could go unacknowledged and uncompensated as the Diocese of Pittsburgh and other dioceses across the state set up and administer victim compensation programs.

Survivors of abuse committed by members of religious orders like the Marianists, as well as by laypeople including teachers, janitors or other adults working in diocesan schools and parishes, will not be eligible to submit claims, according to details of the Pittsburgh program released this month by the diocese and the Washington-based law firm led by Kenneth Feinberg. The dioceses of Pittsburgh and Greensburg hired Feinberg’s firm to design and administer the program.

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