Church in Crisis

As a Catholic university, we share in the deep sadness and moral outrage at the details of sexual abuse of minors and vulnerable adults described in the recent Pennsylvania grand jury report. We stand in solidarity with the survivors of these abuses, many of whom have bravely shared their stories in order to shed light on a terrible darkness within the institutional Church.

At USD, one of our most important priorities is promoting and protecting the dignity of all people. We are, therefore, dedicated to doing all we can to prevent sexual abuse and respond as effectively and compassionately as possible to anyone who has experienced it.

A variety of support services and reporting structures exist for those in the USD community who have experienced sexual assault, relationship violence or sexual misconduct of any kind. If that describes your experience, or that of someone you know, we strongly encourage you to take advantage of the services listed below in order to assist with next steps towards healing and recovery.

Advocacy and Reporting  

You may report your concerns through the university’s Incident Reporting Helpline. The Incident Reporting Helpline can be reached toll free at (1-855-799-8305) or by submitting an online report.

The Incident Reporting Helpline is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. To ensure caller confidentiality and anonymity, the service is administered by an independent third party, Ethics Point.

Counseling Services

  • USD Counseling Center (located in Serra Hall 300 or 619-260-4655)
  • University Ministry staff are available to speak with students, faculty or staff who have experienced sexual misconduct, are struggling with questions about the Church or have had their faith shaken by the recent revelations. University Ministry is located in University Center 238 and can be reached at (619) 260-4735
  • Employee Assistance Program (confidential resource for USD employees)

USD is committed to exploring, investigating and seeking to understand the scope of the abuse within the Church and its underlying causes. As a Changemaker campus of ethical leaders and compassionate citizens, we look for constructive ways to confront injustice and offer assurances of safety and support, particularly to those who are vulnerable and in most need.  During the coming weeks and months a series of events will take place to gather students, faculty and staff to foster open dialogue. Browse events.