Maintaining safe environments and protecting minors, children and vulnerable adults is one of the utmost priorities of the Franciscan Friars Assumption BVM Province. Our commitment to transparency and accountability is consistent with our zero-tolerance policy for sexual abuse and misconduct of any kind. Our policies and procedures are compliant with established national standards of the Dallas Charter for the Protection of Children by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, the Conference of Major Superiors of Men, and Praesidium, Inc. – an independent agency that assesses the sexual abuse policies of private and public organizations. Praesidium regularly monitors, assesses, evaluates, and accredits BVM’s sexual abuse policies and procedures.
How to Report Abuse
Making a Report to Assumption BVM Province
If you have information about alleged sexual abuse by a friar of the Assumption BVM Province against a minor or vulnerable adult, report it by calling our National Survivor/Victim Assistance Coordinator at 1-800-770-8013, or by writing to: Franciscans Victim Assistance Coordinator, 9230 W Highland Park Ave, Franklin, WI 53132.
Allegations of sexual abuse will be reported to civil authorities regardless of whether the accused friar is living or dead, or whether he is a current or former member of the Province.
Making a Report to Law Enforcement
In cases where the victim is currently a minor or a child is currently in danger; make a direct report to a law enforcement agency. If there is immediate danger to a child, call 911 and follow whatever steps law enforcement agents advise to protect the child. If the danger is less immediate, contact the local police department or state child welfare hotline. In cases where the victim is no longer a minor or the abuse occurred in the distant past, statutes of limitation vary by state. Please contact the local police department about making a report.
Introducing Angelica Jochim, Director of the National Office of Victim Assistance
As the Victim Assistance Coordinator for Assumption BVM Province, I want you to know that your contact is very important to me. I have
learned over the years from survivors that it takes a great deal of courage for a person who has experienced abuse by a Religious to reach out, either to make an abuse report or to ask for assistance of any kind.
A little about my background: I am an independent lay psychotherapist in private practice in Sonoma County, CA. Since 2005. I am here to advocate for and assist those who have been sexually abused by anyone serving in the Province. This includes family members who have been secondarily affected.
Now that you have taken this first step, I encourage you to call my toll free number and leave a message for me on my confidential line. I will return your call within one day. If you prefer to email me, you are welcome to contact me that way. Whichever way you choose to reach out, I hope that you do. It is my genuine hope that I will have the opportunity to support your healing.
Angelica Jochim, MFT