- In 2002, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) drafted a landmark document in response to the crisis of sexual abuse of children in the Church. This document set forth the agreed upon responsibilities in combating the problem from within each diocese. The Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People was disseminated and the Diocese of Great Falls-Billings established a program as follows:
• Report to the Bishop regarding compliance with Article 12 of the USCCB Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People.
• Appoint a liaison for the Diocese of Great Falls-Billings to communicate, assist and provide instructional materials to clergy, teachers, volunteers and others who work with children.
• Develop and ensure compliance with an adult program in adherence to the Charter.
• Assure updates to the Charter are communicated fulfill record keeping requirements.
• Gather data from parishes and schools for audit purposes and actively participate in the audit process.
• Establish an Independent Review Board (IRB) to act as a confidential consultative body to the Bishop.
All Children have the right to be safe and protected from harm in any and all environments – home, school, religious institutions, neighborhoods and communities. The Diocese of Great Falls-Billings embraces this right to safety and is dedicated to promoting and ensuring the protection of all children. The Diocese will create safe environments for children, young people, and vulnerable adults