LOOK at THIS. I did NOT know, some states in The United States of America, allow clergy to get away with NOT reporting child abuse and molestation.
What fucking century are we living in anyway? THIS is why I wanted to change laws protecting churches from the same obligations normal corporations have, and no PRIEST or clergy should have the right to keep knowledge of crime against children PRIVATE.
There is something fucking wrong with a country that permits religious leaders privileges of keeping knowledge of crime against children a secret. Who will protect the children if adults do not? Are these children even able to speak up for themselves?
This is like having knowledge of a child prostitution ring, you or me, and we stumble upon this information, and see children being sexually or otherwise abused, and we don't TELL anyone.
That's called a sin of omission, and beyond that, anyone who has such knowledge and does not report it should also be going to fucking JAIL.
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NCSL Home > State & Federal Issues: Issue Areas > Human Services > States Which Require Clergy to Report Child Abuse and States Which Allow Clergy Penitent Privilege Add to MyNCSL
STATES' MANDATORY CHILD ABUSE REPORTING LAWS
States That Require Clergy to Report Child Abuse and States That Allow Clergy Penitent Privilege
The following information is collected from the 2003 Child Abuse and Neglect
State Statute Series Ready Reference Reporting Laws: Clergy as Mandatory Reporters.
The report may be accessed at: http://nccanch.acf.hhs.gov/general/legal/statutes/readyref/mandclergy.pdf.
The Clearinghouse also offers a report on all mandatory reporter categories, by state, at: http://nccanch.acf.hhs.gov/general/legal/statutes/sag/manda.pdf
Clergy as Mandatory Reporters
Approximately 21 states require clergy to report child abuse. The states are: Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and West Virginia. Six states specifically require Christian Science practitioners to report child abuse (several are in addition to clergy). The states are: Arizona, Arkansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Nevada and Vermont.
Clergy Penitent Privilege
Seventeen (17) states recognize the clergy-penitent privilege and allow clergy to maintain the confidentiality of pastoral communications. These states are: Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and Vermont. New Hampshire and West Virginia deny the privilege in cases of suspected child abuse or neglect. Delaware, Florida, Idaho, Kentucky, Maryland, Utah and Wyoming require any person to report, which may include clergy, and they grant the privilege. Louisiana, South Carolina and Washington grant the clergy-penitent privilege although neither clergy nor any persons are mandated reporters. Connecticut and Mississippi require clergy to report, but do not address the privilege in their reporting laws. North Carolina, Rhode Island and Texas require any person to report and deny clergy-penitent privilege in child abuse cases.
All Persons Required to Report
Finally, 18 states, and Puerto, require all persons to report child abuse. These states are: Delaware, Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and Wyoming. Of those states, Delaware, Florida, Idaho, Kentucky, Maryland, Utah and Wyoming exempt clergy from reporting if they become aware of the abuse during confession or in the capacity of spiritual advisor. North Carolina, Rhode Island and Texas require all persons to report and specifically deny clergy penitent privilege in cases of suspected child abuse. Indiana, Nebraska, New Jersey, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Puerto Rico do not address clergy-penitent privilege in their reporting