This might have been posted before, but here we go: Dear Randy, The following Press release will help you to see the reason why I asked for British citizens to write to their MPs and tell their MPs to contact Mrs Clark:
Helen Clark Member of Parliament for Peterborough
FOR IMMEDIATE USEHOUSE OF COMMONS 15.07.02
London SW1A 0AA
JEHOVAH'S WITNESS CHILD SEX ABUSE
MP CALLS FOR INQUIRY
Helen Clark MP has tabled an Early Day Motion in the House of Commons calling for an immediate inquiry into the allegations of child sexual abuse amongst members of Jehovah's Witness congregations. This follows the BBC Panorama expose of past and present cases, which have never been adequately investigated due to the organisation's policy of requiring two witnesses to an alleged offence. Mrs Clarke has been pursuing the matter for nearly two years since being contacted by a constituent, himself a victim as a child, but three successive Ministers have refused to take any action.
"Panorama contacted me when they were preparing this programme and I was able to put them in touch with my constituent and the police who were also aware of the allegations" said Mrs Clarke "I am delighted that the matter is at last receiving the public scrutiny it deserves, having written on a number of occasions to the Home Office without success. In my opinion, Government Ministers have all been too anxious not to offend a religious minority group and therefore too ready to accept outward assurances that the proper procedures were in effect. The Children of members of Jehovah's Witnesses must be afforded the same protection against sexual abuse as any other children in our society. I hope that this EDM will receive sufficient support to put additional pressure on the Government to take action. I would be very surprised if I am the only Member of Parliament to have been approached on these issues.
Text of EDM
EARLY DAY MOTION
JEHOVAH'S WITNESSES AND CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE
That this House congratulates the BBC on its showing of the Panorama programme, which exposes the lack of an appropriate child protection policy amongst Jehovah's Witnesses, since it is the organisation's policy to consider congregation members accused of child sexual abuse innocent unless there are two witnesses, even in the case of listed paedophiles; notes that previous attempts on the part of victims of this abuse to obtain official recognition of the issues involved have been unsuccessful and calls upon the Government to institute an immediate enquiry into the circumstances of past and present cases of such abuse.
CONTACTS: Mrs Helen Clark MP 020 7219 6062