To provide a compassionate and thorough process for receiving and investigating reports of child abuse against personnel of the Archdiocese of Chicago.
In June 1992, the Cardinal’s Commission on Clerical Misconduct presented its report recommending the establishment of comprehensive policies and procedures to address allegations and issues related to the sexual abuse of minors (those under the age of 18) by clerics (priests and deacons). As a result, Joseph Cardinal Bernardin established the Office of Assistance Ministry, the Office of Professional Fitness Review, and the Professional Fitness Review Board; now known as the Office for Child Abuse Investigations and Review (CAIR) and the Independent Review Board.
Office for Child Abuse Investigations and Review
The Office for Child Abuse Investigations and Review (CAIR) has evolved since its establishment by Cardinal Bernardin in 1992. Currently, CAIR is one of the four offices that make up the Archdiocese of Chicago’s Office for the Protection of Children and Youth (OPCY). The three other offices that complete OPCY are the Office of Assistance Ministry, the Safe Environment Office, and the Prayer & Penance Program.
The Office for Child Abuse Investigations and Review is available to all individuals who choose to report their abuse as children or who have the knowledge of the abuse of children in our church. The CAIR staff also collaborates with a number of other archdiocesan offices to help investigate allegations in a timely fashion.
In cases where the reported abuse did not take place by personnel of this archdiocese, the CAIR staff will provide individuals with the necessary information and support so that the report may be made to the appropriate entity and/or public authority.
The CAIR staff along with fellow members of the OPCY, observe mandated reporting requirements in the state of Illinois. Pursuant to archdiocesan policy, the CAIR staff cooperates with public authorities investigating matters of the sexual abuse of minors.
- Receive, review, and investigate allegations of the sexual abuse of minors by clerics, lay employees, and volunteers of the Archdiocese of Chicago.
- In cases where the reported abuse took place outside of the Archdiocese of Chicago and/or by personnel not of the Archdiocese of Chicago, CAIR staff facilitates communication between the individuals reporting the abuse and the appropriate entity and/or public authority.
- Provides resources, referrals, and information about reporting non-sexual abuse and/or neglect to the appropriate entity and/or public authority.
Leah McCluskey, MSW, LSW, Director