Update public on clergy investigation — James Connell

The Journal Times [Racine WI]

August 12, 2022

In April 2021, Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul announced a statewide initiative to review reports of clergy and faith leader sexual abuse in Wisconsin.

The initiative was to have two primary thrusts: confidential communication with the state’s Department of Justice on such abuse, and a physical review of related documentation maintained by the clergy and faith leaders and their respective organizations.

What has happened in the course of the review? Has the initiative been fruitful? Throughout the following months, not much has been said by the attorney general. Yet the citizens of Wisconsin have a right to know — after all, they are paying for the effort.

Kaul’s report should:

  • Describe the steps taken during the review.
  • Explain what has been learned, while appropriately respecting confidentiality.
  • Provide his recommendations for state legislators, law enforcement officials, leaders of the faith communities involved in the review and citizens at large.

Such reporting to the public is part of doing justice.

The Rev. James Connell, Catholic Archdiocese of Milwaukee