Judge Lawrence F. Stengel (Ret.) to Serve on Independent Oversight Committee for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s Independent Reconciliation and Reparations Program

Saxton & Stump is pleased to announce that Honorable Lawrence F. Stengel (Ret.), former Chief Judge for the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, will serve as a member of the Independent Oversight Committee for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s Independent Reconciliation and Reparations Program (IRRP). This program was established to provide compensation to survivors of clergy sexual abuse independent of church influence. The Independent Oversight Committee is tasked with overseeing the claims process and regularly reviewing and examining Archdiocesan programs that relate to child protection and abuse survivor assistance.

Judge Stengel has spent his career focusing on the fair resolution of hundreds of cases in a professional, ethical, and practical manner. His nearly 30-year judicial career has prepared him to take an objective, realistic, and credible approach to reviewing and evaluating existing Archdiocesan programs.

During a press conference today in Philadelphia, Judge Stengel stated, “Fairness and due process are important parts of any dispute resolution process. I have carefully reviewed the procedures for this program, and I am confident this program will independently and fairly address claims of clergy sexual abuse and to provide due process to those making claims.”

Judge Stengel will serve along with Honorable George J. Mitchell, former United States Senate Majority Leader, and Kelley Hodge, former Interim District Attorney for the City and County of Philadelphia. Claims submitted to the program will be administered by Kenneth R. Feinberg and Camille S. Biros. Mr. Feinberg previously served as Special Master for the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund. More recently, he and Ms. Biros served as the administrators of claims programs for survivors of sexual abuse by clergy in multiple dioceses in the State of New York.

This program was created out of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s dedication to preventing child abuse and supporting survivors of clergy sexual abuse. The IRRP will be funded by current Archdiocesan assets. Additional funds will be acquired through the sale of Archdiocesan properties or borrowing.

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