Child Sexual Abuse by Roman Catholic Clergy
The scale and history of the problem
This chapter analyzes the available data on what is known about the problem of sexual abuse within the Catholic Church. It also considers how the available data compare with data from other churches and religious groups, as well as with what we know about child sexual abuse by other “caring” professionals. While these issues are explored on a comparative basis, Ireland and the United States are used as the primary contexts, since most of the available quantitative data on sexual abuse by Catholic clergy emanate from these two countries. Other jurisdictions, such as Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom, and several in Europe, are referred to for comparative purposes.
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