They demand that the clergy-penitent exemption be applied to their
elders notes and documents, and feel they
are being unfairly
discriminated against because their policies differ from those of the
I am about the farthest thing from an attorney, but I've never understood how the WTS can argue for "clergy penitent privilege" when, after an accusation of child abuse:
-- The elder(s) who heard the confession / accusation report to the entire BOE that there is a confession / accusation
-- The elders call the WTS legal department with the info
-- The WTS legal department writes down all the info, and dog knows how many attorneys there confer to discuss the revealed details
-- If the abuser is DF'ed, the Service Department finds out about it and keeps track of the name
-- If the abuser moves to another congregation, the old congregation's "confidential files" follow him to the new congregation, where everyone on the BOE has access to read them
There can easily be several dozen, maybe many dozens, of people who know all about the case. And all that is without the "elders tell their wives / kids / golf buddies everything" rumor mill that is sure to follow.
Contrast that with real "clergy penitent privilege", where a single person confesses to a single priest who is duty-bound to never reveal the details to another person, ever.
What is the legal basis for arguing "clergy-penitent privilege" in the procedure used by JWs?