National Association of Adult Survivors of Child Abuse

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"News of the Week"
EDITOR'S NOTE: Every day we bring you news articles, opinion pieces, crime stories and official information from government web sites. These are highlights, and constitute the tip of the iceberg .. a small percentage of the daily information available to those who are interested in the issues of child abuse, trauma and recovery. Stay aware. Every extra set of "eyes and ears" and every voice makes a big difference.
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"News of the Week"  

September 2019 - Week 2
Terri Lanahan
Many thanks to NAASCA's Terri Lanahan, Butte, Montana,
for her research into the news that appears on
the LACP & NAASCA web sites.


New York State

Abuse survivors hope to have voice heard following diocese's bankruptcy filing

by Andrew Hyman

ROCHESTER N.Y. (WHEC) - Carol DuPre says she was molested by a priest while serving at St Gregory's Catholic Church in Marion when she was just 14 or 15 years old.

'You know it happened, and it lives in the back of your mind,' DuPre said.

She says speaking these words are freeing, but at one time, were words only her mother believed. According to DuPre, her parents were going through a divorce, which she says, was uncommon in the 1960s. She says the situation left her vulnerable and a priest took advantage of that.

'It just shatters your image of a good, and loving God,' DuPre said.

So when she saw that New York State passed the Child Victim's Act, she says, it gave her and other survivors the power to speak up.

But now, with the Catholic Diocese of Rochester's decision to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, fellow child sex abuse survivor Pete Saracino says, a survivor's voice could be robbed.

'That was a profound betrayal of children, catholic families, and their very mission to be the face of God on earth,' Saracino said.

Saracino says he was sexually abused by a priest in the Immaculate Heart of Mary Seminary in Geneva, New York. The location is now a resort called Geneva on the Lake.

Saracino spoke during a press conference Thursday ahead of the diocese's own press conference. He was guided by attorneys Steve Boyd and Jeff Anderson.

'This is not going to stop us and the survivors from revealing the truth, the history that is in some way known to us and the survivors and excavating that and revealing that,' Anderson said.

DuPre's attorney, Mitchell Garabedian, said this 'will not prevent victims from pursuing their rights through the bankruptcy proceeding against the Diocese of Rochester.'

DuPre added, she's not surprised by the filing but thinks the diocese is hiding their heads in the sand. She is keeping positive though.

'I would like to see whatever transpires for me or for anybody else to work for their good, as well as ours,' DuPre said.

Saracino says any good does not have to include money. In fact, he says he does not want people to lose their faith or support for the church, but wants them to be held accountable. He believes there could still be predator priests in power and kids are still not safe.

'I would say again to the catholic community, if you are not willing to stand up to church leadership, who will be there for you if it's your child or your grandchild next?' he said.

DuPre says she wants affirmation and an apology: two things, she says, she never got from the church.

'Like, I'm sorry this happened to you and I'm sorry we didn't do anything for you at the time.


EVENT - 6/19/19

A Light in the Storm

by Adam McKenzie, Bear Lake County Prosecuting Attorney

There is a painting that hangs in my office of a lighthouse in the midst of a raging storm at sea. I often look at that lighthouse and contemplate what it would be like to be helpless on a wind-tossed sea in the dark of night, looking for a safe harbor. In the darkness, a lighthouse stands tall and firm on the rock, providing light, hope, and a path through the storm.

I always think of that painting when meeting with victims of sexual crimes, particularly when the victim is a child. Through no fault of their own, these innocent victims find themselves like a ship, caught in a violent storm and wondering how they can find peace and safety in their lives again. In our community, Bear Lake County MDT is like a lighthouse, providing hope to victims of sexual crimes and a way for them to get through the storm and find safety.

The healing process can be daunting, and MDT is a group of advocates, counselors, law enforcement personnel and others that stand ready, willing and able to help with the healing process. MDT works as a team to marshal all available resources to help victims. MDT operates on the principle that by working together, people can change lives and solve problems. Medical personnel, counselors, and social workers help treat wounds of sexual abuse, both physical and emotional. Through MDT, members of law enforcement coordinate efforts to find and prosecute the offenders.

One of the most difficult things about sexual abuse cases, particularly involving children, is that so often they go unreported because victims are afraid. They feel they do not have anyone they can talk to or confide in, or that no one will believe them. Victims remain silent because they simply don't feel like they have any other alternative. As a community, we can help support those in need by becoming educated in ways we can help those who have been abused and protect those we love from becoming victims.

No person that is a victim of a sexual crime should ever feel that they are alone. With MDT, they have people in their corner supporting them. To any person that is a victim of sexual crime, talk to a counselor, talk to law enforcement. They are there to listen and can help begin the process of finding healing and justice.

Join the MDT tomorrow night, Thursday, September 19, 2019, at 7 p.m. in the Oregon Trail Center Theater for a free event featuring Deondra Brown, a survivor of childhood sexual abuse. Deondra will be speaking about surviving childhood sexual abuse and educating, supporting, and protecting victims and survivors. Deondra performs as a member of the piano ensemble group, the 5 Browns. She has released six albums, several of which have topped the Billboard Classical charts for many weeks. The 5 Browns' seventh album is set for release in late 2019. She has appeared on the Tonight Show, Oprah, Good Morning America, the Today Show, as well as in the New York Times, People, and Entertainment Weekly. Deondra and her sister, Desirae, formed the Foundation for Survivors of Abuse (FSA) to help educate the public on the overwhelming problem of sexual abuse. They work to ensure that survivors across the country are supported and protected under the law.

Please join us September 19, 2019, at 7 p.m. at the Oregon Trail Center Theater for this free event.



AnnaLynne McCord Says 'Memories of Child Sexual Abuse' Came Back During Her Treatment for PTSD


After being raped at 18 years old by a friend in her own Los Angeles apartment more than a decade ago, AnnaLynne McCord sought treatment for post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). And while undergoing therapy sessions last year, the 90210 star recalled painful memories of childhood sexual abuse for the first time in her life.

She opened up to PEOPLE about the traumatizing memories at Mosaic Foundation's first annual Gala Against Human Slavery at Cipriani 42nd Street in New York City on Tuesday night.

“I remembered a sexual assault when I was 19 years old. That was the story I knew,” McCord, who first revealed she was raped in an essay for Cosmopolitan in 2014, told PEOPLE.

“A year ago, I was in treatment for PTSD and memories of child sexual abuse came back for years all the way until I was 11 years,” the Dallas actress, 32, said. “Now I know why this is my life and this is my story because it is so personal to me.”

Growing up, she said that she “believed that sex equated love.”

“Sex and love equaled the same thing,” she explained. “So what did I do? I wanted to be loved. I thought I had to had sex with someone to be able to be loved. It was devastating to my soul as a human being to feel I wasn't worthy of love unless someone was taking advantage of my body.”

Now, McCord, who serves as the president of an anti-human trafficking organization called Together1Heart, has made it her mission to “make sure every single person in this planet knows what love feels like.”

She added: “To be able to be a part of something where young men and women and boys and girls have been through even worse than what I have been through in my own life [and] to see that they weren't suicidal like I was, they weren't cutting up their arms like I was, they were forgiving and loving themselves and those who did that to them, that gave me a way out. They gave me hope.”

A storyline on 90210 — her character Naomi was raped by a teacher –— and her work with survivors of the Cambodian sex trade motivated her to come forward. And she hasn't looked back.

“The support has been amazing,” she previously told PEOPLE. “You think in your head that the opposite is going to happen. You think that you'll be shamed and there will be even more degradation, humiliation. And the opposite has been apparent. But what's even more important than that to me has been the outreach from survivors who are telling me their stories.


EDITORIAL - Note: NAASCA family member

Access to Justice for College Sex Abuse and Assault Victims

by Marci A. Hamilton


Once in a while, a good idea catches on even if it is opposed by major interests. One of those is statute of limitations (SOL) reform, which the Catholic bishops, and even the chambers of commerce, have vigorously fought. Of course, I've been a proponent of eliminating the SOLs for child sex abuse victims for years. I suppose you could say at this point I sound like a broken record (if you are old enough to even know what that means!).

Here's the thing: the logic is irrefutable. Our SOLs have been very short for victims of sex abuse and assault, and the vast majority have been shut out of court. That means as a society we have been barred from learning all that we need to know about the predatory dangers to our children. The only answer is to open the courthouse doors for these victims.

It turns out our college students need SOL reform as much as our children. We send our kids off to college with high hopes and some trepidation. They are so young, and college should be a time of exploring ideas, finding their mission in life, and meeting friends they never would have met otherwise. They are not just chronologically young, but as the science shows, their brains are still developing the capacity to make executive decisions until their mid-20s.

The tragedy is that there is an epidemic of sex assault on our college campuses. There is a nationwide epidemic of sexual abuse on college and university campuses. In a 2015 survey, 5.9% of female undergraduates and 22.4% of female graduate students reported sexual harassment by a member of the faculty. Among cases reported in the media, 10% of female students reported sexual harassment ranging from unwelcome sexual touching to forcible rape by a faculty member. Of these reports, 53% involved repeat offenses by the same faculty member, and the frequency of a single faculty member harassing multiple students increased with the severity of the incidents.

The federal law that makes universities (that accept federal funds) accountable for sexual assault and harassment is Title IX. This is a federal statute where the SOL is “borrowed” from the state where the university is located. For many states, a victim has a mere one or two years from the date of the assault. The trauma, humiliation, and embarrassment typically silence the victim longer than a few years, and so justice is denied, and the public is kept in the dark about the dangers on our campuses.

The college problem is not simply a matter of peer assaults, though that is a pervasive issue. We have been learning in recent years that university doctors also have been prolific perpetrators. With these disturbing reports that athletes and students in universities across the country have been victimized by physicians, we hope that the universities would be vigilant about hiring and overseeing safe doctors for the students. Institutions that hire perpetrators of sexual violence like Dr. Richard Strauss (Ohio State University), Dr. Larry Nassar (Michigan State University), Dr. George Tyndall (University of Southern California), Dr. Dennis Kelly (University of Southern California), Dr. James Mason Heaps (UCLA), and Dr. Robert Hadden (Columbia University) must be held accountable for letting sexual abuse continue unchecked. There are also the predatory doctors who prey on children but are part of university health systems, like Dr. Reginald Archibald (Rockefeller University).

Every university needs to start scrutinizing all of its doctors, because this is yet another vocation where a compulsive predator can thrive: there is a high volume of potential victims, with rapid turnover, and ample opportunities to be alone with the student.

These cases have garnered tremendous attention, leading to increased access to justice for some. To be honest, this is a development I would not have predicted, but there is now a trend toward “window” legislation for victims of specific university doctors. Michigan enacted a 90-day window last year for the victims of Dr. Larry Nassar. California just enacted a one-year window for the victims of doctors at private universities, which was triggered by the Tyndall allegations. Ohio is considering a bill that would revive the expired civil SOLs for victims of physicians at land grant universities in the wake of the Strauss/OSU revelations.

These bills are good, but in my view, they are leaving to the wayside too many other victims. In a perfect world, each state would enact comprehensive SOL reform for child and college victims, and we would dramatically increase our fund of knowledge so that we could effectively stop a wide range of perpetrators now and prevent it in the future.

It is time to nudge the federal government to act. What is the purpose of Title IX if the SOLs in the states are so short that most victims have no chance at justice, and therefore, the secrets that endanger entering college students stay hidden? It's time for the federal government to take full responsibility for Title IX and set its own SOL; in other words, Congress should preempt the state SOLs by setting a federal SOL. Congress should eliminate the civil SOL going forward, and to catch up with all of the predators who have been operating under cover for so long, pass a window.

There is a choice here: protect the perpetrators and the institutions that cover for them, or take the action that proves we do love our college students. This is a simple but revolutionary change in the law that would send a message loud and clear to all campuses: you are accountable for the well-being of your students and athletes, and if you are complicit in a compulsive sexual offender's attacks on your students, you might just have to pay up and improve your policies. Surely, that is not too much to ask.


New Mexico

Former New Mexico Priest Gets 30 Years for Child Sexual Abuse

U.S. News & World Report


(Reuters) - A former Roman Catholic priest who fled to Morocco before he was returned to the United States and convicted of sexually abusing an altar boy in New Mexico in the 1990s was sentenced on Friday to 30 years in prison, prosecutors said.

U.S District Judge Martha Vazquez imposed the sentence in Albuquerque federal court on Arthur Perrault, 81, a onetime Air Force chaplain and colonel, U.S. Attorney John Anderson said in a statement.

"There are few acts more horrific than the long-term sexual abuse of a child,” Anderson said. “At long last, today's sentence holds Perrault accountable for his deplorable conduct.”

Perrault's trial attorney, Samuel Winder, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Perrault was convicted by a federal jury in April on six counts of aggravated sexual abuse and one count of abusive sexual contact with a minor in 1991 and 1992 at Kirtland Air Force Base in Albuquerque and at the Santa Fe National Cemetery, prosecutors said.

The victim, now an adult, testified that Perrault befriended him when he was 9 years old, showering him with gifts and trips before sexually assaulting him, prosecutors said.

Although he was convicted of abusing just one victim, prosecutors alleged in court filings that Perrault was a serial child molester who abused numerous young people over more than 30 years as a priest in New Mexico and Rhode Island.

At his trial, seven other alleged victims testified that Perrault, ordained in 1964, abused them during the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s.

The Roman Catholic Church has been roiled by allegations of sexual abuse since 1992, when the Boston Globe newspaper revealed a decades-long cover-up by church hierarchy of sexual misconduct by its clergy.

The U.S. Catholic Church has paid out more than $3 billion to settle clergy abuse cases, according to, which tracks the issue.

Under federal law, a convicted defendant must serve at least 85% of a sentence, meaning Perrault will likely die in prison.

Perrault fled the United States in 1992 when his criminal conduct became public, prosecutors said. He was located in Morocco, where he was arrested in 2017 following his indictment on the sex charges, and was extradited to New Mexico.

Linda Card, a spokeswoman for the Air Force Office of Special Investigations, said Perrault served in the Air Force Reserve Chaplain Corps, and for a time was on active-duty status.


New Mexico

Former US priest sentenced to 30 years for ‘horrific' child sex abuse

Arthur Perrault (81) fled to Morocco in 1992 when crimes became public and was later extradited

A former Roman Catholic priest who fled to Morocco before he was returned to the United States and convicted of sexually abusing an altar boy in New Mexico in the 1990s has been sentenced to 30 years in prison.

US District Judge Martha Vazquez imposed the sentence in Albuquerque federal court on Arthur Perrault (81), a former Air Force chaplain and colonel, US Attorney John Anderson said in a statement on Friday.

“There are few acts more horrific than the long-term sexual abuse of a child,” Mr Anderson said. “At long last, today's sentence holds Perrault accountable for his deplorable conduct.”

Perrault's trial attorney, Samuel Winder, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Perrault was convicted by a federal jury in April on six counts of aggravated sexual abuse and one count of abusive sexual contact with a minor in 1991 and 1992 at Kirtland Air Force Base in Albuquerque and at the Santa Fe National Cemetery, prosecutors said.

The victim, now an adult, testified that Perrault befriended him when he was nine, showering him with gifts and trips before sexually assaulting him.

Serial molester

Although he was convicted of abusing just one victim, prosecutors alleged in court filings that Perrault was a serial child molester who abused numerous young people over more than 30 years as a priest in New Mexico and Rhode Island.

At his trial, seven other alleged victims testified that Perrault, ordained in 1964, abused them during the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s.

The US Catholic Church has paid out more than $3 billion to settle clerical abuse cases, according to, which tracks the issue.

Under federal law, a convicted defendant must serve at least 85 per cent of a sentence, meaning Perrault will likely die in prison.

Perrault fled the US in 1992 when his criminal conduct became public, prosecutors said. He was located in Morocco, where he was arrested in 2017 following his indictment on the sex abuse charges, and was extradited to New Mexico.

Linda Card, a spokeswoman for the Air Force Office of Special Investigations, said Perrault served in the Air Force Reserve Chaplain Corps, and for a time was on active-duty status. – Reuters.



Europol's Child Abuse Image Geolocated In Ukraine: A Forgotten Story Hidden Behind A Landscape

by Carlos Gonzales, - reseach: Gonzales, Daniel Romein, Timmi Allen and “Bo”

The following report contains reference to a child modelling studio producing child sexual abuse material in 2001. All names related to the studio are fictitious. The original source did not contain any explicit material. All the images accessed and used during the investigation were already censored, but for the avoidance of doubt, it must be noted that the researchers did not obtain, look or download any explicit content. The original source was shared with Europol before the publication of this report and cannot be revealed for protection of the victims and as to not impede the investigations. Although the main objective of the article is to show the method by which an image listed by Europol was geolocated, Bellingcat have decided to publish some details found in the investigation to create awareness of the subject and to support Europol's #StopChildAbuse campaign.

Europol currently holds more than 40 million images of child sexual abuse from across the world. In June 2017, Europol launched a crowdsourcing campaign called Stop Child Abuse – Trace an Object. Censored extracts from explicit images are regularly published on their website and members of the public are asked to help tracing their location or country of origin. These tips are then used to inform the competent law enforcement authority to further investigate the lead and to assist in the identification of the offender and the victim.

As of 23 March 2019, Europol has received more than 23,000 tips, which led to the identification of eight victims and the prosecution of one offender. In recent reports, Bellingcat wrote about their contribution to geolocating images in China and Russia.

For several months, the image shown in Figure 1 was live on Europol's website. From now on we will refer to this image as “ImageC5” in the text. Bellingcat team members and other Twitter users previously pointed out the difficulty of geolocating this image. The main reason: There are no mountains, landmarks, roads, posters, signs, brand names, or any remarkable object featured on it. Instead, there is a rather desolate landscape flooded with weeds and few rural buildings in very low resolution. What we did not know then was the dark story ImageC5 hid, the number of victims affected by it and how the story itself would allow us to geolocate this image to Kalahliya, a Ukrainian village 47 km southwest of Odessa.

Figure 1: ImageC5 as listed by Europol on their website #StopChildAbuse #TraceAnObject (left). The image was geolocated to a village called Kalahliya, which is southwest of Odessa in Ukraine. The red mark indicates the approximate location from which the original photo was taken from; just on the northeast corner of a group of building ruins (right).

The Initial Research

Our first observations about the image were as follows:

A small gradient in the terrain with a few sudden drops across the land

Rural houses and buildings with metal roofs (single and multiple pitch)

Tall dried weeds and broken branches as well as reeds and grasslands

An orange/brick construction with a dark roof far on the right side of the image

The image was edited by Europol to protect the victim. The censoring process was done in such a way that almost 10% of the landscape was reconstructed. Small fractions from other points on the image were merged into the cropped area. This caused the repetition of items in several points of the landscape.

Important Definitions And Key Facts

Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM), also called child pornography, refers to any representation, by whatever means, of a child engaged in real or simulated explicit sexual activities or any representation of the sexual parts of a child for primarily sexual purposes. In 2014, Russia was reported to host the second highest amount of CSAM in the world, accounting for 24%. In 2016, Ukraine was the first in Eastern Europe. The traffic of children for sexual exploitation to Moscow and St. Petersburg from Moldova and Ukraine has also been documented.

<< for the full article see the link below >>



Irish abuse survivor disappointed with global reforms, accountability

by Christopher Gunty -- Catholic News Service

BALTIMORE (CNS) — Clergy sexual abuse survivor Marie Collins kicked off a five-city U.S. speaking tour on “The Catholic Tipping Point” in Baltimore Sept. 10, noting that she is disappointed with the results of the Vatican summit on child protection and efforts toward accountability and transparency.

Collins, who was one of the original members of the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors, resigned from that group in 2017 because she was concerned that promised reforms were not being implemented and Vatican leaders were impeding the commission's work.

Speaking to a crowd of about 100 people at the First Unitarian Church of Baltimore, she said the abuse crisis has brought the church to a tipping point. “The church has come to a crossroads,” she said. “It's got to decide where it's going to go next because if it doesn't change, it's going to lose everything.”

And this change, she said, needs to come from the laity.

Collins told the group she had been molested by a hospital chaplain in Ireland when she was 12.

She said when she finally reported the abuse to a local priest many years later, she was told that she must have tempted the priest who abused her. The priest later lied about that meeting, she added.

Ten years later, she reported the incident to the Dublin Archdiocese and the hospital where the abuse occurred. The hospital offered counseling and reported the allegation to the police; the archdiocese said at the time that the priest had never had any such allegations against him, which was later was found to be false.

“I was lied to in the worst way,” she said. When the archdiocese made a statement that it had followed church guidelines in reporting and dealing with the abuse, Collins said she later met with the archbishop, who told her that the archdiocese was allowed to ignore the guidelines because they had no bearing in canon or civil law.

She said that Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, the next archbishop of Dublin, set up a strong child protection office — a “gold standard” that other bishops should follow. At the archdiocese's invitation, she joined a committee drafting child protection guidelines. “You can't criticize if you're not willing to help if asked,” she said. The committee later voted to disband when the committee was encouraged to weaken the document.

“The document released was very weak,” Collins said, and it noted that a complaint against a layperson would be reported to civil authorities, but a complaint against a priest would be handled internally.

In 2014, she was invited to be part of a new Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors, and she agreed to participate in the group, which was half laypeople and half clergy. Collins was the only member who was a survivor of clergy sexual abuse.

“Sadly, the promises were not kept,” she said. The commission could not get adequate staffing and resources or access to other Vatican departments. She resigned in 2017 when she said it was clear the commission wouldn't be able to do what it had intended.

“We put forward a lot of good recommendations to the pope,” she said. “They were sent to the Curia. None of the recommendations from 2014 to 2018 were implemented.”

She praised Boston Cardinal Sean P. O'Malley, who chaired the commission, for doing what he could. “I don't believe he's a liar,” but she thinks Pope Francis has people “whispering in his ear” who don't have the best interests of children as a priority.

“I believe the pope is doing his best,” she added, “but I believe he's not being told the truth.”

She said she met with Pope Francis when he visited Dublin in August 2018 for the World Meeting of Families and on his flight back to Rome, she said the pope said: “Marie Collins is fixated about accountability.”

“I am,” she said, to applause. “I take pride in that.”

She also told the Baltimore audience that the church “cannot continue to be an institution where clerical secrecy and total dysfunction can continue.”

The church needs to remove anyone who would abuse children, she said. “They should all be cleaned out and any colleagues who protected them.”

The laity have power in the church, she said. “It's our church. It's our children. We must act.”

After Baltimore, Collins' “Catholic Tipping Point” tour was to visit Philadelphia (Sept. 12), Chicago (Sept. 14), New Orleans (Sept. 17) and Los Angeles (Sept. 20).



Global child welfare conference to begin in Oman today

by Times News Service

Muscat: Oman is hosting — for the first time — a global conference on child abuse and neglect this week which will be spearheaded by the Ministry of Social Development in collaboration with UNICEF Oman.

The 2019 International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect Conference (ICSPAN International), will see the participation of some 400 experts, professionals, and high level officials from over 35 different countries around the world who will be attending from 15 – 17 September.

The conference will be held in the presence of Her Highness Dr Sayyida Muna bint Fahd Al Said, founder and chair of Children First Oman, high level officials, and D. Najat Maalla M'jid, special representative of the UN Secretary-General on Violence against Children.

Sultan Qaboos University and the Children First Association will serve as partners in the conference.

The international platform will allow the attending eminent experts, policy makers, researchers, and practitioners from over 35 countries to share their wealth of knowledge and experiences at the national, regional and international levels in the field of child rights and child protection, promoting evidence-based practices in preventing and responding to child mistreatment.

Dr M'jid, UN secretary-general's special representative on Violence against Children, highlighted that 2019 is a milestone year in moving towards the realisation of the ambitious vision of the Convention of the Rights of Child (CRC) and accelerating action for the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

She said: “There is a change in attitudes at every level, there is now broad agreement that violence against children is never acceptable and can be brought to an end, but we also see increasing trends of children on the move due to conflict, natural disasters and climate change increase the risks they face. More needs to be done, better and faster, to protect children worldwide from all forms of violence and to ensure that no child is left behind.”

Lana Al Wreikat, UNICEF representative to the Sultanate of Oman, added: “While the world commemorates the 30th anniversary of the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of the Child in November, a generation of children is being shaped by violence, displacement, and a persistent lack of opportunities-for reasons of geography or gender or ethnicity. We hope that this unique stage will allow us reflect and learn from each other and take stock of progress made in improving the lives of children and adolescents.”

Several themes will be addressed during the conference ranging from violence against children, child abuse, cyberbullying, domestic violence and its impact on the well-being of the child, legislation, successful initiatives addressing child violence.

In a world dominated by conflict and violence, UNICEF will also introduce a new dimension to child protection during the closing ceremony by showcasing the power of music as a healing agent. Famous composer and musician Jad Rahbani will present with Omani children. On the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the CRC, the Sultanate will also launch the Child Protection Ambassadors programme.



How Adverse Childhood Experiences Cost $581 Billion a Year.

Research takes a deep dive into large-scale impact of harm to children.

You use your platforms and voices to both raise awareness and enforce change and be change, and I feel deeply that there is nothing more respectable one with such a platform can do. — Lady Gaga

The original groundbreaking Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study, Relationship of Childhood Abuse and Household Dysfunction to Many of the Leading Causes of Death in Adults (1998) led to an expanding awareness of the suffering, cost and burden illness wreaked by childhood abuse and neglect.

Looking at data from over 17,000 patients in a California HMO, they found that patients with greater than 4 ACEs were at increased risk for a variety of serious problems: “4- to 12-fold increased health risks for alcoholism, drug abuse, depression, and suicide attempt; a 2- to 4-fold increase in smoking, poor self-rated health, =50 sexual intercourse partners, and sexually transmitted disease; and a 1.4- to 1.6-fold increase in physical inactivity and severe obesity.”

Subsequent research has looked at various other aspects of the negative effects of ACEs, on educational achievement, physical and mental health outcomes and biological markers of disease, and impact on individuals, families, communities and society.

A Global Scourge

ACEs represents a chronic epidemic which hurts the entire planet. Not only that, ACEs are perpetrated by our species against itself, as adults both permit and directly enact abuse and neglect on children. Those children of course grow up to be shaped by their developmental experiences, and so the cycle repeats.

The state of the planet and our culture has itself become an adverse childhood experience. The environment we have created is psychologically and physically toxic to us. And we keep it going as-is.

We can study specific outcomes, economic costs, health impact, biological pathways, effects on the healthcare system, and so on. At this time, it is possible only to speculate about the overall impact on our society.

<< for the full article see the link below >>



Why is no priest ever convicted of child abuse in Philippines?

Sex crimes by priests are still ignored in one of the world's most Catholic countries

by Tim Sullivan, Associated Press

TALUSTUSAN, Philippines: The American priest's voice echoed over the phone line, his sharp Midwestern accent softened over the decades by a gentle Filipino lilt. On the other end, recording the call, was a young man battered by shame but anxious to get the priest to describe exactly what had happened in this little island village.

"I should have known better than trying to just have a life," the priest said in the November 2018 call. "Happy days are gone. It's all over."

But, the young man later told the Associated Press, those days were happy only for the priest. They were years of misery for him, he said, and for the other boys who investigators say were sexually assaulted by Father Pius Hendricks.

His accusations ignited a scandal that would shake the village and reveal much about how allegations of sex crimes by priests are handled in one of the world's most Catholic countries.

He was just 12 - a new altar boy from a family of tenant farmers anxious for the $1 or so he'd get for serving at Mass - when he says Hendricks first took him into the bathroom of Talustusan's little rectory and sexually assaulted him.

"I asked why he was doing this to me," the rail-thin 23-year-old said in an interview, the confusion still with him years later.

"'It's a natural thing,'" he said the priest told him, "'It's part of becoming an adult.'"

Extravagant generosity with local boys

The abuse continued for more than three years, he says, but he told no one until a village outsider began asking questions about the American priest's extravagant generosity with local boys, and until he feared his brother would be the next victim.

In November, he went to the police and told them what he knew.

Soon after, local authorities arrested Hendricks, 78, and charged him with child abuse. Since then, investigators say, about 20 boys and men, one as young as 7, have reported that the priest sexually abused them. Investigators say the allegations go back well over a decade - though many believe it goes back for generations, and could involve many dozens of boys - continuing until just weeks before the December arrest. Hendricks' lawyers insist he is innocent.

<< for the full article see the link below >>


Larry Nassar - sports

Federal investigations launched into the handling of sexual abuse claims within US Olympic organizations in the aftermath of Larry Nassar sex-abuse cases

by Eddie Pells, Associated Press

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) - Federal investigators are looking into the way the US Olympic and Paralympic Committee and national governing bodies of Olympic sports handled sex-abuse allegations, people with knowledge of the investigations told The Associated Press on Friday.

The probes, first reported by The Wall Street Journal , come in the aftermath of the Larry Nassar sex-abuse cases that led to massive turnover at USA Gymnastics and the USOPC. The Journal, citing people familiar with the investigations, reported that the probes were wide-ranging and involved grand jury subpoenas that were sent to the USOPC and the US Center for SafeSport - the organization formed in 2017 to handle sex-abuse cases in the Olympic world.

The people who told the AP about the investigations spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss ongoing probes.

The Wall Street Journal reported that prosecutors have spoken with potential witnesses about alleged abuse and misconduct in Olympic sports organizations, including USA Gymnastics and USA Taekwondo.

The Journal said USA Gymnastics' lawyers have been responding to Justice Department subpoenas as recently as April, according to bankruptcy filings. The federation filed for bankruptcy last year.

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Male trauma

For Male Victims Of Child Sexual Abuse, Untreated Trauma Can Lead To Run-Ins With The Law


A note of warning: This story discusses sexual abuse and suicide. It may be disturbing to some readers .

Every week, Daniel Westbrooks walks through a metal detector and several locked doors to visit teens at Nashville's Juvenile Detention Center. He weaves through the shuffle of boys in matching blue polo shirts and gray slip-on sneakers, joking and chatting.

Westbrooks says he knows what it's like to be locked up. He cycled in and out of juvenile detention, jails and prisons for nearly two decades. All the while, he was holding in painful secrets from his past.

"I try to tell them, like, look at me. After, you know, years in prison or going through a lot of, you know, just the stuff that I went through growing up to where I am today," he says. "I don't want you to be 30 years old before the light turns green in your head like, 'Oh, you know what, I can do this.'"

It's easy for Westbrooks to connect with the teens. He asks them questions and chuckles as they spit out rap lyrics and spill the daily gossip. But he also knows many of the teens in detention have experienced trauma, just like he did. As a kid, Westbrooks was sexually abused by a close family member.

"That's probably when I started, you know, slipping from, you know, being a good kid to jumping into my shell," he says.

When he was released from jail for the last time in 2015, Westbrooks decided to devote his next chapter to mentoring kids at risk of traveling down the same path.

Westbrooks says their weekly gathering is a time for both the teens — and him — to reflect.

"I like coming back in here, 'cause this is where I started at," he tells the boys, circled up on benches in the detention center cafeteria.

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Foster Care

Not For Sale: Reducing Sex Trafficking Among Foster Kids

A foster care agency homes to save “aging out” foster youth from homelessness and sex trafficking.

by Tim Darnell

EDITOR'S NOTE: As Super Bowl LIII in Atlanta approached, Patch devoted exclusive coverage to the issue of human trafficking as it related to one of the world's biggest sporting events. Patch remains committed to covering this international plague with our continuing focus on local efforts to combat the crime .

NORCROSS, GA — Therapeutic foster care agency Creative Community Services aims to save “aging out” foster youth from homelessness and sex trafficking. The nonprofit is calling for community support.

“Children who age out of foster care are in a state of crisis,” said Dave Collier, board chair of Creative Community Services and regional business director & partner for Atlanta Office Technologies. “The lack of support for vulnerable youth comes at a great cost to them and to our society.”

Recent research shows 45% of Atlanta's homeless youth were previously in the foster care system or child welfare services. Even more heartbreaking, half of Georgia's homeless youth are sex trafficked or raped.

The Creative Community Services board launched a fundraising campaign to “Open the Door so they can soar.” Their goal is to raise $560,000 by mid-2021. Half must be raised by next June to launch the new program.

To combat these outcomes, the nonprofit proposes a new “Enhanced Home” program. The program provides a safe home environment for youth with low IQ and mental health challenges after they age out. A mentor – much like a foster parent – teaches the life skills needed for safe independent living.

“These kids have no family. They have lower IQs and struggle with mental health challenges like bipolar disorder,” said Creative Community Services CEO, Sally Buchanan. “An enhanced home with mentor support is a totally innovative solution that can help keep them safe and teach them how to manage life without becoming homeless or taken advantage of.”

The board's fundraising campaign will also provide support for its Teen Parent Connection program. Nationally, by the age of 19, half of teen girls in foster care report having been pregnant. Babies and children of teen parents are more likely to be abused, neglected and placed in foster care. The nonprofit offers a Teen Parent Connection program to provide support, guidance and assistance for teen mothers and fathers to succeed as adults and parents.

Creative Community Services has operated since 1982, when it opened its doors to help adults with developmental disabilities integrate into the community. In 1988, the nonprofit became the first in the state to provide therapeutic foster care for children who have been physically or sexually abused. While the organization is based in Norcross, it has served thousands of foster children, teens and adults from across the state in need of these specialized services.


Human trafficking

Trump Admin Pushes Back On Report Claiming Slow Efforts To Combat Human Trafficking

Trump administration officials are pushing back on a recent Axios report that claims their efforts to combat human trafficking have slowed down over the past couple of years.

“Efforts to combat human trafficking slow under Trump,” Axios wrote last week, pointing to State Department data that shows fewer investigations and prosecutions of human traffickers. Axios also noted to the administration's credit, however, that trafficking convictions are on the rise, with the Department of Justice (DOJ) convicting a record 526 defendants in fiscal year 2018.

But senior administration officials tell the Daily Caller that the report still doesn't paint a full picture of everything the administration has been doing to serve victims of trafficking.

“Human trafficking is a disgraceful and unacceptable crime,” one official said. “The Department of Justice continues to prioritize fighting violent crime, including human trafficking, by investigating and vigorously prosecuting human traffickers to bring justice to victims.”

The official pointed to a number of factors that contributed to the lower number of prosecutions:

Cases typically take 2-3 years to prosecute, so longer (and likely more significant) cases would not be counted as “new” prosecutions when they are carried over year to year

Cases are not considered “new” when more defendants are added, a common theme when the feds are taking down organized trafficking operations

State statutes on human trafficking have gotten stronger over the past several years, meaning more cases are being prosecuted at the state level.

The DOJ has also been responsible for prosecuting some of the largest human trafficking cases under the Trump administration:

Thirty-six defendants convicted in relation to an international sex trafficking organization that exploited hundreds of Thai women.

Five defendants sentenced to 15-25 years for running an international sex trafficking org out of Mexico – victims of the “Rendon-Reyes Trafficking Organization” were as young as age 14.

The administration has also managed to increase its prosecution efforts against child traffickers. In 2016, 857 defendants where charged under the federal statutes used to prosecute to the prostitution of children. In 2017, that number rose to 987, and fell just slightly to 952 in 2018.

“The fight against human trafficking is one of the top priorities of the Department of Justice and the entire Trump Administration,” another senior administration official asserted to the Caller. “We remain steadfast in our commitment to eradicating these degrading forms of exploitation from our society targeting the most vulnerable among us."


Sex trfficking

In the world of sex trafficking, justice is hard to find

by Gianluca D'Elia and Marion Callahan

Janine Bonanni reveals a tattoo with the word "priceless." The New Jersey woman was recruited by a trafficker when she was homeless, addicted to heroin and living on the streets. Bonnani was trafficked across the region before she landed in jail and eventually got help through advocacy groups. Now, she is a certified recovery specialist advocating for other victims.

The suicide last month of accused trafficker Jeffrey Epstein is a public example of how justice is often denied to victims of human trafficking, advocates say.

The death last month of accused trafficker Jeffrey Epstein is just a public example of how justice is delayed, or nonexistent, for victims of human trafficking, advocates say.

No form of justice could satisfy most victims of human sex trafficking, local victims advocates say.

Days, months or years of trauma can't be erased, so when a victim steps out to fight for justice and an investigation crumbles, the suffering deepens, they say.

The Aug. 10 death of Jeffrey Epstein, accused of abusing and trafficking young women and girls for decades, sent shock waves through victim advocacy communities because it meant that he will not stand trial. This comes after he dodged a long prison sentence a decade ago, despite an abundance of evidence showing he abused girls at his Palm Beach mansion.

"When something like Epstein happens, it shows this offender again took control and silenced victims that could have been heard," said Charity O'Reilly, a longtime trauma counselor. "For victims, it feels like another silencing. It's a microcosm of what happens to victims every day."

There's a wider impact, too. Kate Lee, executive director of the New Jersey Coalition Against Human Trafficking, said the public missed out on an opportunity to learn more about an elusive crime that's often hidden in plain sight.

"Epstein helped us to hear a lot more about what it's like to be lured and tricked," Lee said. "Survivors didn't just miss out on justice, their day in court and seeing him face to face. We, as a general public, didn't get to understand everything that happened. It would've carried on and done a lot for our culture."

Getting enough evidence to make an arrest in a sex trafficking case is already an uphill battle, according to Newark-based FBI victim specialist Keyla Muñoz. It's hard to know how many human trafficking cases are prosecuted in New Jersey because alleged traffickers might be arrested for other crimes like sexual assault or organized crime. There's also a distrust in the system among victims, and once they're recovered, it's usually difficult to reintegrate into society, Muñoz said. Some victims often don't see themselves as victims.

"There's an element of belief that this is the best they can do," Muñoz said. "At a certain point in victimization, there's very little turning back for them — mentally and emotionally — where it's almost like a Stockholm Syndrome."

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