Overarching Question: As citizens, to what extent can we help bring about the changes needed to better support the social and legal recognition of the victims and survivors of sexual violence?
Summary: Since the late 1980s, the Atlantic provinces have been shaken repeatedly by sexual abuse scandals involving the Catholic clergy. A total of 39 priests were denounced for sexual violence between 1989 and 2018, either in the media or to religious authorities or the law. In 2012, the Moncton diocese hired former Supreme Court Justice Michel Bastarache to lead the conciliation process with the victims of the abuse perpetrated by its priests. The process lasted until 2014. Over 200 victims, some of whom were addressing their victimization for the first time, came forward to share their stories. One of the outcomes is the $18 million that is to be paid out in compensation. However, to date the findings and recommendations issued by Justice Bastarache in his report to the Church officials have yet to be disclosed to the survivors or made public.