STATEMENT OF THE ARCHDIOCESE OF CHICAGO REGARDING
IMPORTANT ILLINOIS APPELLATE COURT DECISION
June 10, 2009
Today, the Illinois Appellate Court held that, under the First Amendment, two individuals who brought child sexual abuse allegations to the Archdiocese of Chicago Review Board could not be sued for defamation by the accused priest.
The Archdiocese of Chicago supports this important decision regarding the protection of children. The Court agreed with the Archdiocese that a person has the right to bring child sexual abuse allegations to the Review Board without fear of a defamation lawsuit.
Equally important, the Court reaffirmed that, under the First Amendment, a church has the exclusive right to determine for itself who shall be its ministers and to communicate freely in making that determination.
The case is Stepek v. Doe, et al., No. 1-08-2140 (Illinois Appellate Court, First District, June 10, 2009).