Risk management and sex abuse

Not interested in writing how Penn State’s cover-up is a classic breakdown of risk management. I think the lessons are obvious. If you want to learn more, talk to Mr. Google.

Then there’s this from The Citadel:

In the wake of the Penn State scandal, officials at The Citadel are coming clean about accusations of child abuse on its own campus after an alumnus was recently arrested on sex abuse charges.

Louis “Skip” ReVille, 32, a decorated alum of the famed military college and principal at a Christian prep school in Mount Pleasant, S.C, was arrested on Oct. 28 and admitted to molesting or performing oral sex on some of the nearly dozen teen boys who have come forward, according to local reports.

ReVille allegedly had a history of preying on boys dating back to his years at The Citadel, but the military college dropped the ball on investigating allegations that surfaced four years ago, the school said.

An honest appraisal, I think, would show that our society deplores sexual abuse but somehow is lacking when it is time to deal with actual cases of abuse, particularly when the victim is under age. This was true at The Citadel and at Penn State and in the Catholic Church. Any seasoned underwriter will tell you that youth organizations like the Boy Scouts are a tough write, and not because of campfire burns.

Those organizations are hardly worse than the rest of us – only their negligence was revealed. For most of us, it has not been. I think risk managers should help their organization’s leaders develop policies that make it easy to report cases and painful to ignore them.

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