Independent Audit of Safe Environment Procedures Finds Diocese of Portland in Full Compliance

An independent audit of safe environment procedures has found the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland, which includes 48 parishes and 144 churches in Maine, in full compliance with the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People. The audit, requested by the diocese, was conducted by StoneBridge Business Partners, a Rochester, New York, company with expertise in compliance auditing. The review covered the period from July 1, 2020, to September 30, 2023.

First approved by the U.S. Bishops in 2002 and revised in 2011 and again in 2018, the Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People establishes a comprehensive set or procedures to ensure a safe environment for children. The charter mandates permanently removing clergy who have sexually abused minor, reaching out to victims and their families with compassion, reporting allegations of sexual abuse of minors to civil authorities, investigating complaints of abuse in a thorough manner, conducting background checks for all personnel, providing abuse prevention and awareness training for all personnel and volunteers, and establishing safe environment programs.

“This review is a testament to the commitment made by our clergy, employees, and volunteers, whether serving at the diocesan level or in our parishes, churches, and schools, to provide a safe environment for our young people,” said Bishop Robert Deeley. “We must remain vigilant to ensure that remains the case now and in the future.”

The Diocese of Portland has been found compliant with the charter in every independent audit conducted over the past 20 years. Nearly 28,000 employees and volunteers having participated in a safe environment program, which includes training and background checks.

Bishop Deeley encourages anyone who may have information about any case of sexual abuse of a minor by a Church representative to contact civil authorities and Michael Magalski, director of the Office of Professional Responsibility for the Diocese of Portland, at 207-321-7836 or at [email protected].