Last week, Care2 reported on the confidential files that Scouts Canada and the Boy Scouts of America kept on pedophiles in their ranks. This week, the CBC revealed that Scouts Canada has signed more than a dozen out-of-court settlements with child sex abuse victims since 1995.
While Scouts Canada has not admitted “responsibility or ownership of the problem” in these cases, CBC learned they have agreed to settlements that reached $200,000 in some cases, in the interest of “minimizing the financial cost to them and making sure that nobody else ever found out about it.”
Out of 24 cases filed against Scouts Canada since 1995, 13 of them involved confidentiality agreements. The confidentiality agreements ranged from prohibiting victims from publicly revealing details of the abuse (in effect silencing them) to not disclosing the amount or existence of a settlement with Scouts Canada.
The significant publicity of this issue following last week’s major coverage of the confidential files in the media is resulting in more stories of abuse and lawsuits coming out, including in Nova Scotia, Toronto and northern First Nations communities in Ontario and Manitoba. The CBC has put together a map of known sex abuse cases involving scout leaders in Canada.
While Scouts Canada claims that it immediately suspends possible abusers and reports them to the authorities, it is nonetheless refusing to respond to reports about the confidentiality agreements.
Photo credit: Hyougushi on flickr