Today, a lawsuit was filed accusing President Russell M. Nelson’s daughter and son-in-law of child sex abuse. The alleged abuse occurred 32 years ago.
I don’t have an opinion on whether or not the allegations are true. What I know is that the charges have been made in full public view. The defense will be grueling and expensive. No matter what, reputations will be tarnished. If a verdict is rendered in favor of the plaintiffs, reputations will be destroyed.
You can read about the suit in the Deseret News, the Salt Lake Tribune or watch it on Fox News. The actual lawsuit filing can be found HERE.
So bishops, what does this have to do with you? We are in a different era than in 1986. Back then, no cell phones (mini-recorders), little concern with adults alone with children, no #metoo movement, certainly no #mormonmetoo movement.
All that has changed. If someone accuses you of abuse of any kind while you were behind that closed door, all alone with a child & talking about sex, YOU WILL HAVE NO DEFENSE. Our society doesn’t have sympathy for an adult who should have known better. They will sympathize with the child every time.
Can you afford to lose your reputation?
Can you afford to defend against a criminal charge?
A stake in my home town of Houston recently instructed its bishops: “Conduct every interview under the assumption that you are being recorded.” Wise counsel.
Better counsel: No one-on-one interviews, no sexual questions ever.
West Virginia Supreme Court says Mormon Multi-State Sex Abuse Lawsuit Can Move Forward
For the story and a link to the supreme court ruling click HERE.
Up to today, my major concern with masturbation interviews has been the harm done to our children.
However, the bishops are also in the cross hairs of possible sexual abuse lawsuits. I have several friends who serve selflessly in this calling. It’s time consuming, often thankless, and sometimes downright depressing.
Then add to their burden the liability of posing sexual questions to a child. Forty years ago, the risk of being hauled into court may have been low. Today, being alone with a child behind closed doors is frowned on by society. To ask the child about sex is unacceptable. The risk of lawsuits is no longer minimal.
- Protect your children from private masturbation interviews.
- Protect your bishops from the frightening legal risks of inappropriate interview practices. Don’t allow them to perform private interviews on your children. Never allow them to probe into sex.
- I am going to write a letter to my stake president requesting that changes be made to the youth interview process. At present, there are 23 members of the stake willing to sign the letter, 14 anonymously and 9 openly.
- Compose a petition where anyone around the world can register their request for changes.
Until the Register for Interview Changes is available, you may want to add your name to the Common Consent Register. 435 members have chosen to actively participate in the Law of Common Consent. I urge you to consider it, too. For details, click HERE