BUFFALO, N.Y. — The Catholic Diocese of Buffalo has created a task force to review and recommend policies and procedures in dealing with sexual abuse allegations with adults.

According to the Diocese, the Adult Sexual Abuse and Misconduct Task Force will ensure the diocese's policies for adult abuse/misconduct complement the policies on child abuse. 

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The task force, which in consists of five members, will also review investigation framework of sexual abuse and ensure it is in compliance with federal and state law, canon law and the Diocese of Buffalo's Code of Conduct. 

Here are the members of the task force:

Patricia Brunsing:  Brunsing, along with her husband, operates four assisted living residences in NYS and two in Ohio.  She is a former licensed nursing home administrator and has served as president of the Franciscan Ministries of Buffalo and Board of Directors for Sisters Hospital Foundation. 

Ellen J. Christensen:  Christensen is a sexologist with a background in human sexuality. She is in private practice specializing in sex therapy, marital and relationship counseling, rape, sexual assault, sexual identity and gender issues.  She is also a former adjunct faculty member at Canisius College.

Maureen Pratt:  Pratt is the mother of six and the grandmother of 19.  She is co-chair of the Respect Life Committee and Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration Chapel at Christ the King Church, Snyder, and parish council member/Christ the King church volunteer in the office at the Carmelite Monastery. 

James N. Schmit:  Schmit recently retired as Special Counsel from Bond, Schoenek and King LLP, specializing in labor and employment law, including gender discrimination and sexual harassment.  He also served in the US Army.

Dennis J. Wittman:  Wittman is retired.  He has a background in restorative justice with over 36 years in the justice system, being a probation officer and then director of Genesee Justice Programs, a part of the Genesee County Sheriff’s Department.  

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