Stop Abuse Campaign
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Stop Abuse Campaign Capitol Hill Briefing Focuses on Stopping the Cycle of Abuse and Violence
Washington, DC —With a message of, “We are here to help,” anti-abuse and anti-violence organizations joined with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Victim’s Right Caucus to brief Capitol Hill on the wide extent and massive costs of abuse in today’s society. The event at the Rayburn House Office Building was hosted by the Stop Abuse Campaign (www.stopabusecampaign.org ), and Reps. Ted Poe (R-TX) and Jim Costa (D-CA), co-chairs of the Congressional Victims’ Rights Caucus. “In our efforts to prevent injuries and violence, the CDC is currently partnering and looking to do public/private partnerships to end violence in the community,” said Dr. Linda Degutis, Director of the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control at the CDC. “It takes a whole community to prevent violence and our effort involves a multi-disciplinary approach. We do know that prevention and partnerships are critical to ending violence.” Andrew Willis, CEO of the Stop Abuse Campaign applauded the work of the CDC as well as the role of many organizations who have been working on the many facets of the cycle of abuse. “Abuse is a combination of dangerous attitudes and behaviors, including deliberate, physical, sexual, emotional and financial abuse of the weak by the strong. It must be stopped,” added Willis. “All abuse and violence is interconnected,” said Robert Geffner, Ph.D., co-chair of the The National Partnership to End Interpersonal Violence Across the Lifespan (NPEIV) and President of the Institute on Violence, Abuse and Trauma at Alliant International University. “We must focus on prevention and education so that everyone can feel safe in their own homes, feel safe in their schools, feel safe on their streets, and feel safe in their communities,”said Geffner. “If we don’t act now, the statistics on abuse and violence will continue to grow.” Two speakers reminded the audience of their personal stories of abuse and violence, and the work they’re doing to stop abuse. MIldred Muhammad, former wife of convicted and executed DC Sniper and a survivor of interpersonal violence, reminded the audience that a victim of abuse doesn’t always have physical scars, but is still very much a victim. “Eighty percent of victims of abuse do not have scars to prove it,” said Muhammad, “but we stand with them.” Chris Anderson, executive director of Male Survivor brought his message that, “Healing and hope are possible for all survivors, but every surivor needs support.” Anderson, himself a survivor of childhood sexual abuse, emphasized that what happened to him, can happen to anyone. “Not only can the abuse happen,” said Anderson, “but the healing can happen too.”
How big does the ripple grow?
Though the statistics are overwhelming, the road to ending abuse is not so complicated after all. Child abuse stops when WE stop it through prevention, intervention, education and recovery.
Child abuse is everybody’s problem. Stand up. Speak out. Be a part of the solution.
CPS: Re abusing the powerless victims of child abuse
If someone asked you your definition of credible evidence, what would you say? Would you say that medical records, photographs, psychologist’s report, and even a child’s statement is credible evidence? This agency says no, this is not credible evidence, because if it was the reports would have to be indicated.
Wow! Good job! Awesome!
To punish or not to punish? We also spend a lot of time debating that issue. But do we ever really talk about “catching” our children in the midst of wonderful behavior? Or even good behavior, for that matter? How about a little time spent discussing the power of praise?
CAPTA 40 years later
The ACE study showed that all child abuse is a matter of life and death. The Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA) turns 40 this year. It’s birth represented a milestone in our accepting of children’s rights and what is necessary to keep them healthy. After 40 years, CAPTA is still an essential tool to protect children, although newer research shows we’re harming children if we rely on it too heavily.
Despite what your attorney may tell you about how it will make you “look” if you refuse to release your records, consider this point, particularly when it comes to custody/visitation: if you were so “crazy” that you are not a fit parent, why did your partner never pursue this claim when you were together?
What does safe feel like?
Now, the ACE research establishes that exposure to domestic violence creates catastrophic health consequences for children. The pressure from professionals who make their income responding to domestic violence custody cases, normal preferences for the status quo and reluctance to acknowledge widespread failures from existing practices are obstacles to creating the reforms needed to protect children.
DV reform goes to Washington
Many people have asked how my meetings in Washington went so I wanted to provide an update to my earlier article. In general the meetings were productive and I am encouraged by the response. I suspect the needed reforms will not come with the urgency that is necessary, but I do feel we are making progress.
Genie, you’re free
I look back and wonder what, exactly, saved me that day. I had always had the love of friends and family. I had, and still have, a strong faith. I had an inner fire, a determination to do good in the world and help others. But that day, I felt as though I would never be able to help myself or, more gut-wrenchingly, my children. Many times, a survivor of abuse sees no other way out but this one.