Friday, June 28, 2013

Victim’s attorneys call on L.A. district to do more to combat sexual abuse of students

LOS ANGELES – Los Angeles district leaders recently launched a website to detail settlement offers for students who were sexually abused by teachers at Miramonte Elementary School.

The district announced this spring it would be willing to pay $30 million to settle 58 claims stemming from abuse allegations at the elementary school, most of which were carried out by two teachers – Mark Berndt and Martin Springer. Both have pleaded not guilty and are awaiting trial, the City News Service reports.

This week district officials launched to provide “accurate information and details” about settlement offers, but attorneys representing the abused children and their families contend neither the money nor the website goes far enough.

“Compensation for these victims cannot be discussed until assurances for meaningful policies are in place at LAUSD to protect children now and in the future,” Vince Finaldi, attorney for the victims, said in a press conference outside of the district’s headquarters, according to the news service.

“The lack of appropriate response to the underlying institutional issues could cause the alleged abuse at Miramonte to happen again,” he said. (more...)

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