Newcastle Catholic Bishop supports abuse inquiry

Posted July 26, 2012 16:28:27

Newcastle's Catholic Bishop says he would support a public inquiry into sexual assaults at a time when there are growing calls for a Royal Commission into clergy abuse.

The Hunter Valley has been rocked by clergy abuse, with scores of people reporting incidents over the past 50 years.

It prompted the formation of a dedicated clergy abuse police strikeforce which has laid more than 170 abuse charges.

The Maitland-Newcastle Catholic Diocese has also offered support through its child protection unit.

But many families across Australia say more needs to be done and there are growing calls for a Royal Commission into the Catholic Church's handling of sexual assault matters.

Today Maitland-Newcastle Bishop Bill Wright has issued a statement saying he is broadly supportive of public inquiries into sexual assault matters.

But he says it would be for the Government and its agencies to determine what would be the best form of an inquiry.

Topics: child-abuse, sexual-offences, police, catholic, newcastle-2300, maitland-2320, muswellbrook-2333