HOW TO REPORT ALLEGATIONS OF SEXUAL ABUSE

REPORT IMMEDIATELY!

REMEMBER: YOUR ROLE IS TO REPORT. THERE IS TO BE NO INVESTIGATION BY YOU OR ANYONE ELSE AT THE PARISH/SCHOOL LEVEL

If you suspect abuse has occurred within a family:

  • Contact the Department of Social Services within the county the abuse took place.
  • Contact the Diocese at 1-843-261-0430, to report status.

If you suspect an abuse has occurred that involved diocesan personnel (priests, deacons, teachers, employees or volunteers) contact:

  • The local police department immediately.
  • Call the Victim Assistance Coordinator at 843-856-0748 or 800-921-8122

STATE MANDATORY REPORTERS / ALL CHURCH PERSONNEL

Please note: Mandatory reporters are legally required to report allegations of sexual abuse. Failure to report can result in legal action. The Bishop of Charleston considers all “Church Personnel” to be Mandatory Reporters. Failure of Church Personnel to report may result in termination of employment, or removal from volunteer ministry.

State Mandatory Reporters Are:

  • School teachers, counselors, principals, assistant principals
  • Child care workers in day care centers and foster care facilities
  • Clergy, except where information is received from the alleged perpetrator during a clergy/penitent privilege
  • Social or public assistance workers
  • Substance abuse treatment staff
  • Police or law enforcement officers
  • Undertakers, funeral home directors and employees
  • Persons responsible for processing films
  • Judges
  • Computer technicians
  • Physicians, nurses, dentist, optometrists
  • Medical examiners and coroners, and their employees
  • Any other medical, emergency medical services, mental or allied health professionals
  • Christian Science practitioners, religious healers

Church Personnel / Mandatory Reporters Are:

  • All employees in the Diocese of Charleston. This includes all parish and school employees as well as all diocesan offices.
  • All Volunteers involved in ministries of the Diocese of Charleston.

If you have been abused by a sitting bishop, priest, or other Church personnel, please contact law enforcement officials in the area where the abuse occurred. You should also contact the Diocese’s victim assistance coordinator, Louisa Storen, to request access to pastoral resources, including a counseling referral, when appropriate at 843-856-0748 or 800-921-8122.

Additionally, if you are reporting abuse by a sitting bishop, you can make a report online at Catholic Bishops Abuse Reporting website: reportbishopabuse.org  or call 800-276-1562 after contacting law enforcement.