The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) has today (Thurs) published its report on the Archdiocese of Birmingham, as a case study of the Roman Catholic Church.

We accept that we have failed victims and survivors of abuse and again apologise for the grievous failings we have made in the past. Apologies are just words though, if not backed up by action.

We will take the time needed to review the IICSA report thoroughly in order to make a considered and detailed response, which will inform our ongoing commitment to do more and do better.

In light of independent reviews commissioned by Trustees and made available to IICSA, the Archdiocese has already fundamentally changed its practices and processes to ensure an open and compassionate approach to victims and survivors. It now has more safeguarding personnel, better management and recording systems, stronger DBS/checking procedures and clear policies and practices on safeguarding referrals and agreements, to safeguard those who come in contact with the church.

If you would like to speak to Archbishop Bernard Longley about your own experiences, you are very welcome to get in touch by contacting the safeguarding team on 0121 230 6240 or via email: [email protected].  Meetings with victims and survivors have already been arranged and taken place. We are committed to listen to and learn from victims and survivors.

For a listening ear outside of the church, NAPAC is the National Association for People Abused in Childhood. If you want to talk about what you experienced in childhood and how it is affecting you now, you can call their support line on 0808 801 0331 or email their support team via the NAPAC website: https://napac.org.uk/contact/