Victim Compensation and Counseling Program Moving Toward Implementation

Cardinal Joseph Tobin, C.Ss.R., Archbishop of Newark, has announced that representatives of the New Jersey Catholic Conference will meet with Kenneth Feinberg and Camille Biros on Tuesday, December 11 to plan the implementation of the Victim Compensation Program to be funded by the five Catholic dioceses of New Jersey.

Kenneth Feinberg served as the Special Master of the September 11 Victim Compensation Fund, and fulfilled a similar role – with his associate, Camile Biros – for the Archdiocese of New York and the Diocese of Brooklyn. They currently are in the process of developing such programs for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and the Diocese of Pittsburgh, among others.

The goal of the meeting with Mr. Feinberg and Ms. Biros is the development of a statewide protocol to enable the survivors of sexual abuse to relate their experiences to an independent auditor, and to obtain financial compensation for the harm that they have sustained. The results of the meeting with Mr. Feinberg and Ms. Biros will be presented to the New Jersey bishops on Wednesday, December 12. It is anticipated that the plan for implementation of the Program will be finalized by Friday, December 14.

Prior to adopting the plan to implement the victims’ compensation fund, the bishops will seek comments and observations from independent individuals and institutions – including members of the legislature – so that the program will have input from all stakeholders.