Safe Environment programs are well-established in all three Roman Catholic Dioceses in Connecticut. The Safe Environment program in the Diocese of Bridgeport has a full-time director, Ms. Erin Neil, L.C.S.W. Safe Environment programs oversee the implementation of Charter mandates including victim assistance, criminal background checks, written Codes of Conduct, and child sexual abuse awareness and prevention training for priests, deacons, lay employees, volunteers, children, and youth.
The Safe Environments Office is dedicated to ensuring the safety of all children in our Diocese.
A Prayer for Healing Victims of Abuse
Click here to read our Safe Environment January 2020 Newsletter
Boletin de Noticias Ambientes Seguros Enero 2020
The following is a transcript Mark Joseph Williams reflection to the USCCB General Assembly:
As a clerical abuse survivor, a victim of a half-century ago, I am deeply grateful to have this opportunity to speak with you, the custodians of our Roman Catholic faith. You are entrusted across these vast United States to lead pilgrims of faith in the Joy of the Gospel. You are the primary evangelizers at this time here and now in all your respective dioceses. Pope Francis put it clearly and powerfully at the start of his papacy:
“May the world of our time, which is searching, sometimes with anguish, sometimes with hope, be enabled to receive the good news not from evangelizers who are dejected, discouraged, impatient or anxious, but from ministers of the gospel whose lives glow with fervor, who have first received the joy of Christ.”
The Office of Safe Environments, Victim-Survivors of abuse and family members will host a special Day of Healing and Recollection on Thursday June 29th, 2023 for anyone who has been wounded within the Church. We hope that any person who has left the Church because of the abuse crisis or for other concerns will consider attending.
St. Margaret Shrine
2523 Park Avenue, Bridgeport, CT
Feel free to join us at any point in the day. You are welcome! There is no fee to attend.
Schedule (Thursday June 29, 2023)
8:15 Mass and Rosary
9:30 Courageous Conversations with Survivors
10:30 Stations of the Cross –The Way
11:30 Courageous Conversations with Survivors
12:30 Lunch and Closing Prayer
If I am not a victim of clergy sexual abuse, is this for me?
Yes! This day is for anyone who has been abused or has been wounded within the Church. We have had participants in our group in the past who were abused by family members, clergy, religious, doctors, coaches, family friends and others. You will not be taking a spot from someone else who needs it, YOU need this and we are here for you.
Will I have to talk about the details of my abuse?
You may share your experiences if you choose in a safe environment, however, this is not required. There will be social workers, members of the clergy, survivors of abuse and family members of victim-survivors who are available to meet or speak with you.
Will I be able to keep my information confidential?
The staff are considered Mandated Reporters which means we will handle your information with a high level of confidentiality at all times however, there are legal limits to confidentiality concerning abuse or risk of harm. You control how much you share in this setting and we can help you make a report to D.C.F. or Police when you feel ready. We encourage everyone to report early concerns and all incidents of abuse to civil authorities.
To register or for more information, please contact Erin Neil, L.C.S.W, Director of Safe Environment and Victim Assistance Coordinator with the Diocese of Bridgeport.
Phone: (203) 416-1406
Cell: (203) 650-3265
Victims/Survivors Of Sexual Abuse As Minors
Protecting God’s Children – A Quick Reference Guide
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Child Lures Prevention
Visit this website dedicated to important information about the protection of our children for over 25 years.
Safe Environment Summary
Click to download the Safe Environment Outline Summary (PDF)