A recent, typically terse response from the De La Salles to Survivor NW1 is copied below.
The DLS strategy is clearly defensive rather than compassionate and healing. This is a pity as a more heart-based and genuinely spiritual response would work better for them, even at this late stage, but I guess their Suits don’t understand this. They’ve pulled up the drawbridge of their castle and think they can repel all boarders as they’ve done in the past.
Recent posts on this site bear this out. The Scotland case for instance.
And Barry Hudd told a reporter that a Hydrant historic investigation into the DLS could take a considerable time to be actioned.
Why he should say that, I find concerning.
IIRC, I believe he also said that there had been no successful civil actions against the De La Salles. Or words to that effect.
Why he should say that, I find concerning.
It would be easy after such negativity, their response below, and the Scottish case, to form the impression that the DLS believe they are impregnable. That they always win. That they have the best lawyers to defend them and so on.
And therefore it might be easier to give up and try to forget what they did.
I believe that’s what they want us to think.
So it’s worth remembering the progress so far:
1)Their Provincial was suspended following complaints on this site.
That would be previously ‘unheard of’ (to use Barry Hudd’s phrase).
We are still awaiting the results of that investigation which is taking a curious amount of time. Even so, it must come.
2) Their public apology, written by lawyers, was pathetic and wasn’t public but it was the result of social media pressure and it was highlighted in the press.
3) Media attention is not good for the DLS. There’s been plenty of it and there is more in the works.
I believe DLS motivation is ultimately about money and business, for all their pious words. The social media and media attention on the DLS is not doing their business any good.
Every new shocking revelation about the DLS may make parents think twice about sending their children to a DLS school.
International survivors of the DLS are now coming forward with their complaints because of this social media and media attention.
4) The SCOE have passed complaints onto Hydrant. Hydrant will act, even if it takes a while.
5) The DLS have commissioned their own independent investigator to look at the allegations in conjunction with Hydrant. (The independent case manager they mention below)
The DLS have been curiously and predictably secretive about the details, but – nevertheless – it’s an investigation.
And that feels – potentially – like real progress as the investigator is independent.
6) There are a number of current police investigations involving DLS lay teachers.
7) A Scottish survivor is taking legal action against the DLS. It’s something I’m considering myself. Anyone thinking along those lines, I’d recommend a conversation with Richard Scorer at Slater and Gordon. He’s an expert on the crimes of the Church.
So the DLS castle is not as impregnable as they seem to suggest. We are already scaling its walls.
NWI below says it needs an open and independent inquiry into what happened.
I absolutely agree.
Such inquiries can take forever to happen, which may be a good reason for lobbying for one sooner rather than later. Its possible terms of reference are also a matter for a future post. But when I read yesterday that a Survivor was so upset by the conduct of the DLS, he intended to set himself alight outside their Oxford offices, it reminded me that there is something desperately wrong here that needs urgently looking into.
Serious abuse issues – such as at St Jo’s Ipswich – are thus not completely ‘unheard of’, as Barry Hudd claims.
Also, how the DLS have provably known about the most notorious DLS abusers for years and yet did nothing until it was highlighted here. IMO this amounts to systemic abuse
The IICSA inquiry into the Benedictines was only five out of ten, with many shortfalls, but at least it provides a potential role model. And it did make some difference to a number of Survivors and to the Benedictine schools.
I now have concise, easy to follow files on all the major DLS crimes which could be sent to relevant people, like government ministers.
Everyone’s thoughts on how to lobby for such an inquiry and its feasibility are most welcome.
Here are NW1’s thoughts:
NW1 here. as you know I’ve been seeking justice in my own case. Recently, I write to the order to ask whether they would be voluntarily providing details they hold about known abusers. The inference is that they will only provide information when it is requested from them by police.
“I acknowledge your own ongoing frustration and anger towards DLS, and I am sad for your own suffering and any ongoing distress. DLS cooperates with the police on any investigation and share fully any records held as requested.
However, should you hold information that the police need to be aware of I would encourage you to disclose any details to Suffolk and Dorset police.
SCOE and DLS will consider if any further action is required post the outcome of current police investigations; and any recommendations that the police, or an independent case manager, who is advising SCOE on these matters make.
Recently, DLS did publish on its website an apology to any person who may have suffered abuse either by a brother or lay member of staff at any of their schools.”
There will not, therefore, be an open and public reckoning by the DLS Order of the suffering caused to hundreds of their victims, The “apology” they published on their website, which you have previously mentioned in this blog, is all we are likely to get. Unless we call for an open and independent inquiry into what happened.
Hope this helps.