Repeat news: Dutch abuse article first published 2011

A recycled news story published earlier this month that accused over half of Dutch bishops of complicity in sexual abuse was first published in 2011.

The Dutch bishops’ conference said “much of the information” provided by NRC Handelsblad had been “public knowledge” since 2011.

“The time for praying and apologizing is clearly over; we’re in a new phase of firmer commitment to prevent all abuse,” Daphne De Roosendaal, conference spokeswoman says.

“But while many people know how much the bishops have done, some media reports still give the impression cases from decades ago have only just occurred.”

The spokeswoman says NRC Handelsblad’s aim in publishing the story was intended “as a service to the people of Holland” after a mid-August grand jury report on clerical abuse in Pennsylvania.

However, Handelsblad drew its material from previous church-commissioned reports, mostly listing “well-known cases” that had been investigated.

“Since 2010, the church has initiated large-scale investigations as well as a contact point for people to file complaints, arrange mediation and seek financial compensation,” she says.

“Although people have been shocked by these latest stories, leaving victims and survivors in pain again, they mostly cover old news. Everything is now in place to ensure sexual abuse no longer happens anywhere in our church.”

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News category: World.

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