Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Survivors' Group Sued By Former Employee Charging Kickbacks From Victims' Attorneys

A lawsuit was filed last week in an Illinois state court by a former employee of SNAP (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests) alleging that SNAP, instead of helping sex abuse survivors, exploits them.  The complaint (full text) in Hammond v. Survivors Network of Those Abused By Priests, (Cook Cty IL Cir. Ct., filed 1/17/2017) alleges that:
SNAP routinely accepts financial kickbacks from attorneys in the form of "donations." In exchange for kickbacks, SNAP refers survivors as potential clients to attorneys, who then file lawsuits on behalf of the survivors against the Catholic Church.
The complaint adds the allegation that "SNAP is motivated largely by the personal animus of its directors and officers against the Catholic Church."  Plaintiff claims retaliatory action was taken against her after she confronted her superiors with the claim that SNAP was colluding with survivors' attorneys. Kansas City Star reports in more detail on the lawsuit. SNAP says that the allegations in the lawsuit are not true.

Meanwhile, RNS reports that long-time Executive Director of SNAP,  David Clohessy, announced yesterday that he had left his position with the organization in December. He says his departure is unrelated to the lawsuit filed last week.