Sexual Abuse Survivors, Diocese of St. Cloud Reach Framework for $22.5 Million Agreement
(Saint Paul, MN) – Sexual abuse survivors and the Diocese of St. Cloud have reached a framework for a $22.5 million agreement two years after the Diocese of St. Cloud announced it would file for bankruptcy. The Diocese announced that it would file for bankruptcy in March 2018 under pressure of lawsuits brought during Minnesota’s Child Victims Act Window. Since then survivors and the Diocese have worked together to reach the framework agreement, which will now proceed through the bankruptcy court. The Diocese intends to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the coming weeks to start that process. The agreement would compensate survivors of child sexual abuse by Diocese of St. Cloud clergy and also provide for additional child protection measures in the Diocese, including the release of files of credibly accused priests.
“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.”
In January 2014, the Diocese released a list of 33 priests who were assigned to work in the Diocese of St. Cloud who the Diocese identified as likely to have abused minors. As a result of lawsuits and investigations in Minnesota and across the country brought with the help of statute of limitations reform, the Diocese of St. Cloud’s list of likely abusers has grown to 41. Under the framework agreement, the files of all 41 of those clergy credibly accused of sexual abuse of minors will be made public.