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The Boston Red Sox and Major League Baseball ignore childhood sexual abuse victims

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The Boston Red Sox and Major League Baseball ignore childhood sexual abuse victims

MEDIA RELEASE – SEPTEMBER 16, 2016

The Boston Red Sox and Major League Baseball continue to ignore and re-victimize more than twenty (20) childhood sexual abuse victims of former Red Sox equipment and clubhouse manager, Donald Fitzpatrick, and will not allow them to try to heal by fairly and reasonably settling their claims

What
A demonstration and leafleting regarding the refusal on the part of the Boston Red Sox organization and Major League Baseball to help more than twenty (20) childhood sexual abuse victims of Red Sox equipment and clubhouse manager, Donald Fitzpatrick, heal

When
Saturday, September 17, 2016 from 11:00 am until 1:00 pm

Where
On the public sidewalk in Kenmore Square, Boston, MA before the Red Sox/Yankees game

Who
Dr. Robert M. Hoatson, Co-founder and President of Road to Recovery, Inc., a non-profit charity based in New Jersey that assists victims of sexual abuse and their families.

Why
The Boston Red Sox organization has done great work in the community concerning “Boston Strong,” the “Jimmy Fund,” and earlier settlements of millions of dollars regarding sexual abuse claims against a former Red Sox equipment and clubhouse manager, Donald Fitzpatrick. One of the ways the Red Sox served the communities in the cities in which they trained and played was to allow young boys to work as “assistants” to their equipment and clubhouse manager.

Many boys, mostly from the inner-city, had their dreams come true when they were selected to work in the clubhouses of many ballparks in the United States, but those dreams quickly became nightmares when they were sexually abused in some ballparks by a serial pedophile, Donald Fitzpatrick, the long-time equipment and clubhouse manager of the Boston Red Sox.

It is therefore disappointing and surprising that the Red Sox organization and Major League Baseball refuse to help more than twenty (20) childhood sexual abuse victims of Donald Fitzpatrick who sexually abused minor boys in Fenway Park, Boston; the Orioles ballpark in Baltimore, MD; the Kansas City, MO, ballpark; and the training facility of the Red Sox in Winter Haven, FL.

In 2011, Attorney Mitchell Garabedian of Boston issued a financial demand letter to the Boston Red Sox on behalf of the more than twenty (20) sexual abuse victims of Donald Fitzpatrick, who died in 2005 while serving a ten-year suspended sentence and fifteen years’ probation for attempted sexual battery against boys younger than twelve.

Attorney Mitchell Garabedian also contacted the Commissioner of Major League Baseball, Robert D. Manfred, requesting the cooperation of and assistance of Major League Baseball in resolving the claims of the more than twenty (20) sexual abuse victims of Donald Fitzpatrick who seek to obtain settlements that will validate their claims and help them try to heal.

Demonstrators will call on Boston Red Sox fans, New York Yankee fans, all fans of baseball, and the general public to join Donald Fitzpatrick’s sexual abuse victims’ request for justice and fairness. All sexual abuse victims of Donald Fitzpatrick should be proud of themselves for coming forward, reporting the truth, and making the world a safer place for children.

Contact
Robert M. Hoatson, Ph.D. – Road to Recovery, Inc. – 862-368-2800 – [email protected]

It was a great job.  Jetsetting around the world, managing integrated marketing communications for global brands like Citi, IBM and HP.  The cliche, “It’s Hong Kong, it must be Monday” and stopover weekends in attractive cities my reality.

I returned home to a beautiful 6,000 square foot stone house in Connecticut, my wife and two children.  An ideal life. Work hard. Play hard. Good friends. Great family. Two vacations a year; sailing in the summer, skiing in winter. Church on Sundays.

 

Then I woke up.

 

Staring into the bright clinical lights of the Very Intensive Care Unit in a hospital far from home. I’d swallowed 300 Tylenol PM and wished the world goodbye. Almost a week before.

Leather straps hung off my bed by my feet and arms where they secured me.

My veins had coursed with crystal meth. My arms… bruised and punctured. My goodbyes said, not heard.

I had never even smoked weed until I was over 50. Taking drugs was my way of medicating away the pain and humiliation of remembering my youth. Still today much of my childhood years are cloaked under the shrouds of secrecy that protect our sanity but drive our depression.

Why? I had to know why this happened to me. Was it just my bad choices or was something else at play. I guess I went in search of excuses – but I found answers. I found I was not the only one. In fact I was no different to about a quarter of people. One in four of you in this room is hiding a secret from childhood.

My search for the answer, combined with the love of my two boys, family and friends has kept me alive.

My search initially led me to the Adverse Childhood Experiences Study (ACE Study). A massive study of childhood trauma and its impact on health carried out by Kaiser Permanente with the CDC.

The answer at first overwhelming. The answer it affects us all.

The epicenter of the problem- abuse and neglect of children.

The higher your ACE score-the more types of abuse, neglect and household dysfunction you lived through as a child- the worse your health outcomes throughout your life.

My ACE score is 5. That explained a lot of my life. A life I enjoyed, but full of the stress of secrets. Secrets require lies. And lies spread, a bit like flies.

Someone with a score of one is twice as likely to be an alcoholic, twice as likely to suffer from chronic depression, and one-and-a-half  times as likely to experience serious financial problems.

Someone with an ACE score of 4 is a staggering 40 times more likely to use intravenous drugs.  And 114% more likely to have 50 or more sexual partners throughout their lives. More than 1 in every 10 of us attempt suicide every year.

When your score reaches six, statistically you can kiss 20 years of your life goodbye

A score of 9, well they are often the cases reported on shows like Criminal Minds.

The ACE research made me realize I wasn’t the only one. I was harmed by the boarding school teacher who took me into his bed at night when I was ten. An older boy who had raped me shortly before. An entire culture who thought kids needed to be beaten until they bled. All these things I lived through as a boy made me who I was. The soldier I was. The businessman I was. The husband I was. The father I was. Woven by invisible thread to the meth, 300 tylenol, promiscuous sex through to the bright lights glaring in my eyes and the nurse beside me noting that I had woken up.

Abuse is a public health problem. America’s biggest public health problem but one we don’t like to discuss. After all who wants to talk about incest and children murdered?

We’re all responsible for our behaviors, but not our histories. Neurologists show how ACE’s affect children, and the adults they become. Science. Not rhetoric.

Science affecting us all. Documented suffering on a universal scale. Costing American taxpayers a trillion dollars every year. More money than I can imagine.

$1 trillion has twelve zeros. It is over $200 billion more than the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Australia . It’s more than the combined GDPs of Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and Finland.

Abuse and neglect are predictable and preventable. Prevention that stops massive human suffering and saves enormous sums of taxpayer’s money.

Changes in public policy protect children from most ACE’s.

The Stop Abuse Campaign is focused on helping communities make the health and safety of children their first priority. We achieve this through educating the public, legislators and public officials about state and local government policy changes that protect a child victim’s first right; not to be a victim at all.

We’re working with the community in Erie County, turning the child murder capitol of New York into one of the safest places in America to grow up.

We start with strong local leadership. Educate them about ACE’s and how to prevent them. Coordinated community responses the most effective.

  • Preventing domestic violence, in the homes and in the family courts, happens by using an evidence based solution. The Quincy Solution. Stops Domestic Violence.
  • Helping struggling mothers rather than persecuting them for the crime of youth pregnancy, through  evidence based maternal home visiting programs achieves incredible, well documented results. And it leaves you wondering why states like New York are cutting funding today?
  • If it takes a village to raise a child that means those villages must change old fashioned beliefs and stigmas that maintain the status quo.
  • Now I’m sure many of you would be shocked if a registered sex offender moved into the house next door but the reality is 9 out of 10 sex offenders are not registered. Not prosecuted. Protected by archaic laws called statutes of limitations that protect rapists not children.

The sad truth is Adverse Childhood Experiences affect children at pandemic rates. And the aftermath affects us all. ACE’s can be prevented through public policy.

And that’s why I have dropped the corporate world of high pay and even better bonuses. Why I work for nothing, eating at friend’s houses and worrying about paying the rent.

The only way I can continue to live my life. The only way I can continue to drive the right of a child to grow up free of abuse and neglect is if you dig deep in your pockets tonight and donate what you can.

Donate $7, one dollar for every speaker tonight. Or donate an awful lot more because tonight’s speakers deserve your donation and right now deserve your applause.

Thank you for being here. Thanks for listening, And thanks for your generosity. With your help we will stop abuse and neglect.

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