New York Catholic churches continue to face backlash for sexual assault allegations. Now a lawsuit has been filed against eight dioceses, including Syracuse, Ogdensburg and Rochester.
After enduring abuse himself, one man is looking for answers.
Paul Dunn wants the names of priests accused of sexual assault and their history released. Syracuse is one of the dioceses that has been sued for a list.
"They are engaged in the most massive cover-up of childhood sexual abuse by any system in western civilization, and that's why they have to be held to account," said Jeff Anderson, Dunn’s attorney.
Leaders from the diocese also admitted that 49 priests were accused of sexual abuse in a 2004 report. Dunn says he was sexually abused by a priest in the Brooklyn diocese and leaders tried to cover it up.
"The ultimate objective is to have children protected and families warned about the risks that only they know,” said Anderson.
Albany, Rochester, and Brooklyn have already released partial lists.
"There's never been a full disclosure by any of the dioceses or any of the bishops,” Anderson said. “So, they're all deficient and choosing to keep secrets that are perilous."
Danielle Cummings, the chancellor of the Syracuse diocese, says the names are not concealed. She says they were given to the Onondaga County District Attorney.
"The practice in the Diocese of Syracuse, if the individual who has been harmed wishes to have the name of their accused publicly announced, we will confirm it," Cummings said.
But Cummings says not all victims want the names disclosed.
"Every time the issue of child sex abuse in the church comes up, that brings fear to them and they call us and ask us not to release the names,” said Cummings.
"There are never any victims or any survivors that I've encountered that don't want the names of their offenders released,” said Anderson. “So, if the bishop suggests the victims don't want their names released, that's absolutely disingenuous."
Cummings says it's difficult to create lists, especially if a priest is deceased. Anderson says they won't give up until all names are revealed.
Spectrum News also reached out to the dioceses in Rochester and Ogdensburg, but leaders there declined to comment.