SNAP starts Aotearoa-New Zealand chapter

The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) has established a chapter in Aotearoa New Zealand.

The Aotearoa New Zealand chapter, was founded by Dr Christopher Longhurst (pictured), a lecturer in theology at the Catholic Institute of Aotearoa New Zealand and survivor of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and brothers.

The New Zealand chapter of the network describes its mission as supporting each other, protecting children, providing advocacy around laws, reporting abuse, and speaking out against abusers and those who have covered up for them.

SNAP NZ is welcoming survivors of abuse from all faith-based organisations and says that through all of its endeavours it hopes that together healing will be delivered.

“At SNAP Aotearoa-New Zealand, we know that sometimes all it takes to heal is a little support. We are determined to make an impact,” Longhurst said.

“The core of our efforts will be to bring together survivors of abuse by priests and religious across Aotearoa-New Zealand.

“None of our members are experts. We’re just survivors helping survivors.”

International organisation

Internationally, NCR, 2018, reports a flurry of SNAP leadership resignations.

The resignations occurred over 15 months, leaving many inside and outside SNAP asking questions about its future.

SNAP received only 130 registrations for its 2018 conference.

This number is less than half the number at the 2017 annual international conference.

Speaking at the 2018 conference, acting administrator Tim Lennon sought to ease concerns about SNAP’s survival.

Later in the year, SNAP described “as momentous” the appointment of Zach Hiner as new executive director at a time Hiner labels as “critical”.

SNAP claims to be the largest, oldest and most active self-help group for clergy sex abuse victims, whether assaulted by ministers, priests, nuns or rabbis.

The international organisation claims more than 25,000 members and support groups meet in over 60 cities across the United States of America and the world.


Additional reading

News category: New Zealand.

Tags: , ,