Keeping in mind the increasing sexual abuse, the church will now take drastic steps with the introduction of the new Law. The law demands that all the church priests and nuns to report clergy to higher church authorities.

One of the feature this law provides is that, the investigation should be done in a confidential manner. If the identity of the accused is a bishop or any religious authority holder, then internal investigation will take place.

This law is clearly promoting a safe environment for all those working under one roof. This is law is a perfect solution to respond to sex abuse taking place in or around the world.

More to know about this law

The law states that it does not require them to report it to the police. Moreover, it defines that crimes that involve “threatening” or “forcing” any adult to perform a sexual act must immediately be reported immediately. It also ensures that the victim’s statements do not go unheard. The report must be analyzed properly and most importantly supported by higher church authorities in order to maintain peace with the law. Besides this, the law also states the provision of providing psychological or medical or spiritual support to the victim.

Investigations are confidential

Although all the investigations will take place under pontifical secret, the victim has the right to know the outcome of the investigation. This provision helps the victim to know about the proceeding without keeping him/her in the dark.

It is also seen that many times the misconduct and misbehavior of higher religious authorities escapes the eyes of laws. Although these cases are reported by the victim or their lawyer, but the law fails to prove the accused guilty.

Therefore, this law further claims that such higher religious authorities will be  accountable to the pope for any of their sexual misconduct.

Working of the law

The law requires the reporting of any such activity to the Holy See and to the metropolitan bishop. The bishop then has a period of 90 days for investigating. Once he finds the claim “manifestly unfounded”, he seeks permission from the Vatican regarding the same.

After the introduction of this law, the body will provide special funds to incur the expenses of this investigation. Bishop also has the power to seek expert’s help for a smooth investigation.
After the investigation is done, the bishop sends the results to the Vatican so that further processes can take place.

The Vatican is also responsible for sending information during the entire process of the investigation so to ensure transparency throughout.

The laws are made, but it is we who are responsible for their proper implementation and maintenance. It is thus necessary for all the victims to stand and raise their voices against such mishaps.