The catholic church and child abuse

The Australian newspaper has reported a study on child abuse in the catholic church. If the report is accurate it is likely to be treated as controversial to put is as neutrally as I can. Somehow I doubt that victims will treat the report's findings as either objective let alone credible. A  study into the causes of the child-sex scandal in the US atholic hurch refused to call the abuser priests pedophiles and blamed the abuse on a moral decline in US society. he study by the John Jay ollege of riminal Justice in New York said the problem was not the result of homosexuality, celibacy and an all-male priesthood, but of poor seminary training and insufficient emotional support. It found that men ordained in the 1940s and 50s were not able to withstand the social upheaval they confronted as pastors in the 60s. "Most of the priests who had allegations of abuse are not pedophiles," said lead investigator Karen erry, because they "abused pubescent or post-pubescent minors". Victims of pedophiles are defined as 10 or younger in the study, commissioned by the US Conference of Catholic Bishops. Covering the period since 1950, it found the problem was a thing of the past. "he crisis of sexual abuse of minors by atholic priests is a historical problem", with the rise in abuse cases in the 1960s and 70s "influenced by social factors in merican society generally". "Factors that were invariant during the time period addressed, such as celibacy, were not responsible for the increase or decline in abuse cases over this time." Ms erry said the 1960s and 70s were a period that saw "patterns of increased deviance of society", and the church sex abuse scandal developed in parallel. "The social influences intersected with vulnerabilities of some individual priests whose preparation for a life of celibacy was inadequate," she said. Victims' groups rejected the report as an attempt to focus blame for the scandal on priests, instead of on bishops who allowed offenders to stay in ministry without warning parents or police. "hey want us to fixate on abusive priests, not callous bishops," the Survivors Network of hose bused by Priests said. Diane Knight, chair of the body of lay Catholics that oversaw the study, said nothing in the report "should be interpreted as making excuses for the terrible acts of abuse that occurred". 


Charles has considerable specialist experience in pursuing claims for compensation for those who have been abused in childhood. His specific expertise means that he is recognised locally, nationally and internationally for his work which has taken him all over the world including, USA, Australia and New Zealand.

He is also recognised for his significant involvement in the high profile litigation against St Georges School (Anglemoss Limited) and Cyntwell High School. These cases involved a staggering number of individuals who pursued those responsible whom despite heavily defending the claims brought against them settled by way of out of court settlements.

Charles regularly features in local and national press and he is often asked to provide his professional opinion and commentary on relevant abuse law issues and developments on radio and television broadcasts. Such broadcasts include BBC South Today, BBC Wales, ITV and ITN News.

Charles is a member of the Association of Child Abuse Lawyers.

You can follow Charles on Twitter and Facebook.

Charles obtained his Law degree at Kingston University, before successfully completing his Legal Practice Course. He trained and qualified with Verisona Law beginning his specialism in the field of child abuse claims. He received his higher rights of Audience in 2012 making him one of the youngest Solicitor-Advocates in the country who is able to represent his clients in the High Court. Charles is head of the abuse team who collectively have secured compensation for hundreds of victims of abuse.

He began diversifying in to other aspects of abuse law and his team are one of the very few in the country who specialise in claims against social services.

He is involved in complex group action litigation and also represents a number of individuals and who are pursuing private companies, local authorities and perpetrators in pursuit of their justice.

Charles has strong contacts with some of the most prominent barristers who advise on abuse claims including a number of QC’s. He also has robust connections with highly qualified expert witnesses he instructs in support of those who he represents.

  • Child abuse claims
  • Claims against social services
  • Complex/Catastrophic Clinical Negligence claims

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