Moncton diocese's money woes will worsen, lawyer says
Robert Talach says several lawsuits by alleged sexual abuse victims pending
The financially-troubled Diocese of Moncton could soon face even more problems with several lawsuits in the works, says an Ontario lawyer.
Robert Talach says he has about 15 clients who don't want to go through the church's compensation process.
At least one lawsuit has already been filed, but the litigation could drag on for years, he said.
"I mean, there'll be disclosures the rest of this year, the rest of this decade," said Talach.
"It's an individual consideration when a person comes forward," he said.
"You know, a victim who may only be in their 20s or early-30s now is probably not prepared to speak about this … to anybody."
Cutting staff, selling church
Earlier this week, the diocese said it is shedding staff and selling off one church property in order to cover the roughly $5 million in compensation owed to victims of sexual abuse.
The diocese has been forced to deal with a series of sexual abuse controversies in the last year.
Retired Supreme Court of Canada Justice Michel Bastarache was hired to help deal with the sex abuse compensation process. It is estimated the diocese will pay out $5 million to victims of sexual abuse.
So far, about 80 people have been offered money through the church process, according to the diocese.
Talach says he's coming to Moncton later in the month to meet with clients.
"I put it quite succinctly for those who just want to get in and get out and want some minimum level of compensation and do it in a hurry and aren't concerned with matters … beyond that, such as accountability and knowing what exactly happened," he said.
"You know, they can go the church route and the alternative of course is a civil lawsuit, which, no question is going to be a longer process, but it will likely be more enlightening."