New York Daily News
September 9, 2022
By Muri Assunção
A bankruptcy judge in Delaware has approved a $2.46 billion Chapter 11 reorganization plan for the Boy Scouts of America, a decision that will directly impact more than 80,000 sexual abuse survivors
The Thursday ruling by Judge Laurie Selber Silverstein comes more than two years after BSA filed for bankruptcy protection amid a large number of sexual abuse lawsuits that had been filed by Scouts who had been sexually abused as children by the organization’s leaders and volunteers.
The Coalition of Abused Scouts for Justice celebrated the “historic day for tens of thousands of survivors of childhood sexual assault.” The coalition, which was formed in 2020, includes more than two dozen law firms representing more than 70,000 survivor-claimants in the BSA bankruptcy case.
“The confirmation of this plan makes closure possible and some measure of justice tangible for people whose voices have been silenced for far too long,” the group told the Daily News in a statement Friday morning.
The decision means that “tens of thousands of people who were abused as children will be eligible for compensation within their lifetime.”
The amount each survivor could receive from the bankruptcy plan will depend on multiple factors relating to the abuse, according to Jeff Anderson and Associates, a St. Paul, Minnesota-based firm that specializes in representing victims of childhood sexual and represented more than 800 Boy Scout abuse survivors.
The funds for the settlement will come from BSA, as well as local councils, insurers, and organizations that supported scouts activities, including Catholic institutions and parishes.
“Credit to the courageous survivors that this breakthrough in child and scouting safety has been achieved,” attorney Jeff Anderson said following the judge’s decision.
According to the coalition, the judge reviewed the $2.46 billion reorganization plan and “concluded that it was proposed in good faith.”
But the group added that the monetary compensation, while welcome, is only part of the fight.
“Throughout this case, what we’ve heard time and again from survivors is that it’s not only about the money, because no amount of money in the world will make up for being sexually abused as a child,” the coalition said. “The most important thing to them has been ensuring the safety of current and future Scouts.”