Statistics

As yet, there is very little in the way of Australian figures for clergy sexual abuse. Where possible, I will include such statistics as they become available. In all the research results given, country of origin is named where known.

Some figures are cited for other professional/health care fields, but given the factors in church systems of a) less mechanisms for accountability; b) often no clear Codes of Ethics (at least until recently); and c) minimal training in counselling and professional boundaries, it would be surprising if the incidence of abuse by clergy is lower. I have included paedophilia statistics as well, since there is a huge overlap between clergy abusers and paedophiles - but I stress that this is not intended to negate the experience of adult victims of clergy misconduct.

In September 1999, the Dept of Justice in Wisconsin, USA, published the following profile of a typical paedophile:
*Most often an adult male
*Usually married
*Wide range of occupations from unskilled to executive
*Usually is non-violent, has few problems with the law, often is a well respected member of the community.
*Relates better to children than adults
*Socializes with few adults unless they also are pedophiles
*Prefers children in a specific age group
*Prefers males or females but may be bisexual
*May seek employment or volunteer for programs involving children of the age of his preference
*Pursues children for sexual purposes
*May take or collect photos of his victims (either dressed, nude or in sexually explicit acts)
*Collects child erotica and child-adult pornography
*May furnish narcotics to victims to lower inhibitions
*Usually is intelligent enough to recognize he has a problem and that it is severe
*May go to great lengths to conceal illegal activity
*Often rationalizes his activities by saying they have a positive impact on the victim -- minimizes or denies that any harm was done
*Often portrays the child as the aggressor
*Talks about children in the same manner one would talk about an adult lover or spouse
*May correspond with other pedophiles and/or exchange child pornography
*May seek out organizations/publications that support his sexual beliefs
*Often was molested as a child and frequently seeks out children at the age he was molested.

Butterfly

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