Be very careful what you believe to be true. There are many good people, the challenge is to find them.Details
For the New Year, KARA is asking everyone to support the people, policies and programs that make life better for struggling families and children.
Call and write policy makers where you live and let them know about conditions for and needs of at risk children where you live.
Let’s all strive to make this a better, safer year for at risk children everywhere.
Stay on top of the issues by signing up and sharing KARA’s Free weekly email updates with people that can make a difference for the children that need it the most.Details
During the virus scare .. let’s each of us re-double our effort online and via the phone to inform
those around us of the devastating consequence of suffering childhood sexual abuse (CSA),
violent or physical abuse, emotional and mental trauma and neglect.
Learn about the CASA guardian ad-Litem program and how your can make life better for abused and neglected children – Today, there are 500 abused and neglected children in Ramsey & Hennepin County child protective services without a guardian ad-Litem. Being a State Ward child is painful. Being a voice for that child is rewarding and makes a difference in the life of that child.
All Adults Are The Protectors of All Children; learn more here;
This three-part mental health program is app based and self-learning (a form of artificial intelligence, it knows the user) and includes unlimited coaching…Details
KARA Virtual Presentation this Sunday 10am; ACEs/Adverse Childhood Experiences & the Lifelong Impact of the COVID Lockdown on Children Suffering from the Trauma of
being Stuck in Toxic Homes, how their trauma affects us all.Details
This may be our community’s (nation’s) most serious health problem. Add the psychotropic medicating of abused children & I think it is.Details
Our communities are only as safe and healthy as the institutions that create the environment we live in.
A brief search of front line workers in education, health care, law enforcement or social work shows a growing exodus by retirement, medical leave or just walking away as COVID is making the work they do an even more extreme sacrifice than it was pre pandemic.
For those of us that live with, know or love a person engaged in keeping our children educated or the rest of us safe and healthy,we know the stresses facing these people and the fear and danger of bringing a secondary trauma or risk of COVID home at the end of the shift.Details
Trauma doesn’t heal itself and America doesn’t provide much more than Prozac for tortured 12 year olds.
For an in depth and moving photo graphic look into incarcerated children in America’s Juveniles In Justice, check out Richard RossDetails
KARA’s Founding Board member and best friend David Strand has passed away after a long illness.
He brought a wealth of experience, passion and commitment to the cause of America’s abused and neglected children.
David came to know a great deal about how children are treated in other advanced nations because he helped to craft public policies on children’s issues while living and working in Northern Europe.Details
KARA (Kids At Risk Action) tracks current news about at risk children bringing transparency and attention to our youngest and most vulnerable citizens. The COVID pandemic has interrupted most major media reporting of child abuse issues.
KARA’s reporting is only sampling of what should be reported – the great majority of child trauma & abuse is never known. Major media and institutional reporting on children’s issues are much lower due to the COVID pandemic.
ALL ADULTS ARE THE PROTECTORS OF ALL CHILDREN
Follow KARA on FacebookDetails
Arianna was wrapped in sheets, left alone in a closed room and slowly starved to death. Foster parents Sherrie and Bryce Dirk will go to prison for murdering Arianna. This solves nothing.
There is something terribly disturbing about a State sanctioned foster family starving a 3 year old State Ward child to death that needs to see the light of day.
Arianna must not have had a County social worker (today’s Star Tribune article …Details
Poor districts are suffering more domestic violence & substance abuse from from front line worker stress, poverty and job loss making online learning that much harder for children.
Many poor families are crowded into small spaces, lacking necessary internet access and hardware for adequate online learning.
This NY Times article barely acknowledges the social and economic costs of abused and neglected children locked into toxic homes during COVID. Abused children have no teacher or other mandated reporter to recognize and respond to their traumas. There is no comparison to having a trusted teacher to privately speak to in school and a video chat with the abuser in the room or nearby.Details
Recent surveys by the Casey Foundation and the NY Administration of Children’s Services show that about a third of kids in NY’s foster care identify as LGBTQ and nationally, about 24% do. 40% of homeless kids in NY City identify as LGBTQ and 42% of them had been in foster care.
This NY Times article focuses on how hard life is for them. Many of these youth and children are in foster care because their parents rejected them.
Many are homeless, depressed and leading dysfunctional lives.
Every year about 12,000 children aged 5-14 years old are admitted to psychiatric hospital units for suicidal behavior. This and all the information following are PRE COVID.
Young children who have attempted suicide are up to 6 times more likely to attempt suicide again in adolescenceDetails
Yesterday, KARA’s best friend and founding board member Joe McCarthy passed away after a long illness.
We will miss him terribly. Joe had a big heart and remarkable mind. He was sharp as a tack with an interest in everything and a stunning memory.
20+ years ago, Joe encouraged and then guided me through the writing of the INVISIBLE CHILDREN book and founding of our nonprofit Kids At Risk Action.
Our small board spent many hours sorting through issues and ideas for making life better for abused and neglected children. We worked together to create our first board meetings and involve more people in the endeavor we are so passionately engaged in today.Details
and 63 recent car-jackings (over the last 39 days) many include vicious assaults & mostly committed by teens – kids as young as 12, puts the lie to that belief.
For decades, the vast majority of serious and violent crime has been committed by youth and young adults. In these 63 recent car-jackings, women are beaten, one man was shot dead and another dragged as he tried to stop them from stealing his car with his wife and child inside.
During this time of pandemic and civil unrest, it’s apparent that our city is much more dangerous than it was a year ago.
What is less apparent, are the key drivers that have needed our attention for a very long time that (if addressed) could dramatically reduce the anxiety, violence and unrest in our communities.
Before, when schools, health care and public safety seemed to work, we have had little concern with how or why things work and the luxury of not paying attention to the people, programs and policies involved.Details
Michele Norris Star Tribune article on MN child care is just the tip of this iceberg. Did you know that the U.S. used to have the best and most affordable daycare in the world?
Today, the COVID pandemic has forced many daycare centers to close and others to raise prices significantly due to social distancing and sanitation requirements.
in many states, single Parents pay over 50% of their income for infant center care and married parents with 2 children pay over 100% of their household income for center based care (or they would if they could make it work). Minnesotans pay over 15 thousand dollars for infant care (when public college tuition is 11 thousand dollars. 20 years ago, there were 34 names on the waiting list for MN’s subsidized daycare. That ended when the new governor took those state funds away and the list grew to over 7000 families. Some states have never provided meaningful help for families struggling to afford daycare.
For a nation claiming to value children – one could argue it’s for the dollars they bring in and not their future role as citizens. Drunk uncle/boyfriend daycare is a growing sadness the media…
For a nation claiming to value children – one could argue it’s for the dollars they bring in and not their future role as citizens. Drunk uncle/boyfriend daycare is an awful thing the media…Details
Americans have always talked big about supporting equality, keeping children safe, supporting schools & better conditions for young families.
Today, our pro-child, pro-family discourse has become so vicious that many Americans rationalize our government taking immigrant babies and children from their mothers and then losing them so that these mothers may never see their children again. Children have become political footballs in immigration, education, health care and law enforcement and this should disturb us.
A great deal of money and political will has gone into denigrating immigrants, public schools, teachers and the front-line workers trying to keep children healthy and safe.
Tuesday’s election is about this.
Which candidates support more access and more resources for education, health and mental health and an end to racial injustice?
“What we do to our children, they will do to society” (Greek philosopher Pliny the Elder 79 AD)
Please vote – the next generation needs you to speak for them.Details
Woo Hoo – MN passed a restorative justice act for veterans – diverting at-risk veterans toward probation and social service programs instead of jail time when they commit certain crimes.
Why wouldn’t we?
The World Health Organization defines torture as extended exposure to violence and deprivation. Living in a war zone, bombs going off nearby or a buddy shot dead in front of you changes the brain.
Most of us want soldiers that have experienced traumas in the service of this nation to be treated for their mental health issues and have a path to rebuild their lives as productive citizens.Details
This 2020 report examines 24 variables and includes three new health behaviors—recent prescription opioid misuse, STD testing, and HIV testing. It also provides data on the health behaviors and experiences of sexual minority youth from the 2015, 2017, and 2019 cycles of the national Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS), allowing trends to be reported for this population for the first time.Details
Arianna Hunziker was “starved, dehydrated, bound, immobilized and abandoned in a home littered in trash and smelling of of urine”. Foster parents Sherrie and Bryce Dirk went to prison for murdering Arianna. There is something terribly disturbing about a State sanctioned foster family killing a two year old State Ward child that needs to see the light of day.
The lawsuit in today’s paper points out that another MN community is having a hard time with either the resources, training or protocol for keeping at risk children safe. Being a foster child should not be one more horrific encounter with child abuse. It’s plenty hard when your birth parents make your suffering so bad that a judge removes you from their home to place you with a family you have never seen before.Details
These articles reflect current trends in child suicide & self-harm in America today. Only a fraction of child/youth suicides are successful. The vast majority of self-inflicted harm remains invisible. Mental health services are badly needed by young people today as the COVID pandemic is locking children into toxic homes with little or no access to the adults that could help them.Details
Grace, a Black 15-year old who was sent to a juvenile detention center for failure to submit schoolwork.
In an email to Grace’s caseworker, her teacher stated that Grace was “not out of alignment with most of my other students.”
Tens of thousands of children have struggled to adjust to the online learning environment the coronavirus created. ProPublica cites 15,000 high schoolers in Los Angeles alone failing to log in or complete schoolwork. Yet, a judge presiding for Oakland County Family Court Division, ruled in May that not completing schoolwork violated Grace’s probation.
It’s impossible to determine the frequency of cases like Grace’s, but one thing is clear. Children’s health and safety must be prioritized. We will continue urging states to stop admissions and to release kids from juvenile facilities. No child should be in juvenile detention for missing homework.Details
This JAMA article indicates that we continue to underestimate the prevalence of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders by a factor as high as 10. If this is true, 5% of American children are born with a wide range of permanent and lifelong physical & mental health deficits that will result in school & life failure and premature death.
Most people in the fields of education, law enforcement or social work know the explosive growth of mental health issues of children in their in schools, homes and squad cars. We are all becoming mental health workers.
The greater and sadder truth reflected in these studies is the continued minimizing, euphemizing and obfuscation of how America treats its children and troubled young families.
The ground truth is that children can’t speak for themselves, the media sees this as a negative story and the institutions involved benefit through non-transparency and under-reporting.
These sad truths insure generation after generation of child abuse and children born of drug and fetal alcohol abuse. The cost to society and taxpayers is horrendous. We would all benefit by understanding these grim truths.Details