Diocese of St. Cloud, clergy abuse survivors reach deal on framework for $22.5M settlement

Clergy sexual abuse survivors and the Diocese of St. Cloud announced an agreement on a framework for resolving clergy sexual abuse claims against the diocese and its parishes.

The diocese announced in March 2018 that it would file for bankruptcy. The agreement would include the diocese filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy while paying $22.5 million for a trust to compensate clergy abuse survivors. The funds will be made up of insurance coverage settlements, cash and property contributions from the diocese and its parishes.

The agreement, which also provides for additional child protection measures in the diocese, will now proceed through bankruptcy court.

“We applaud the strength and courage of all of the sexual abuse survivors who have come forward and shared their truths,” said attorney Mike Finnegan. “They stood up, spoke out, and reclaimed some of their power.” 

Additionally, the diocese will publicly disclose the names of, and files of, all clergy against whom credible claims of abuse have been made. In January 2014, the diocese released a list of 33 priests identified as likely to have abused minors. Attorneys for the survivors said investigations have determined that list has likely grown to 41.

Anyone who has suffered sexual abuse is encouraged to report it to local law enforcement, regardless of when it happened. Survivors of clergy abuse are also urged to contact the diocese's victim assistance coordinator, Roxann Storms, at 320-248-1563 for other assistance.

You can see the diocese's full announcement regarding the settlement here.