Sex assault victims want their day in court
"They think an amount of money will shut our eyes to his," said Lowell Mallais, an abuse victim.
"We're just waiting for our day in court to tell our story, so that this will never happen again."
The Catholic Diocese of Bathurst hired former Supreme Court justice Michel Bastarache earlier this year, to present recommendations for compensation for victims of sexual abuse by Catholic clergy.
Bastarache was hired after Levi Noel, an 84-year-old former priest, was convicted of 22 sex-related offences and Charles Picot, a former priest who had worked in Dalhousie, was charged with indecent assault. Picot's trial has yet to take place.
Bastarache's report, which was given to the bishop and the lawyer for the diocese on Monday, was to be the final step in a conciliation process that was aimed at avoiding a court battle.
Although some of the victims have opted to accept compensation from the church, nine of the 45 victims Bastarache met with opted out of conciliation.
Mallais, who is one of Noel's victims, has filed a lawsuit against the Diocese of Bathurst.
"It's not that we're proud of being abused by Levi Noel," he told CBC News on Tuesday. "But at one point we said, 'We have to show our faces and put a face on the victims and we have a story to tell.'"
Conrad Brideau, who was also abused by Noel, said the priest ruined his life.
"It's a tough life, thinking about suicide, thinking I was no good on this earth," he said. "It was a tough life. I don't want anybody to go through this kind of life. Nobody deserves this."
Brideau said he is suing the diocese for failing to reveal information, such as which parishes Noel worked at.