National experts on juvenile crime urge states to invest in this type of counseling and rehabilitation, instead of confinement and punishment, as a way to stem adult crime and incarcerations. But for the last 20 years, most states have gone in the opposite direction, said Liz Ryan, director of the Campaign for Youth Justice.Details
Do you know your state representative? If you don’t, find out today and call her/him with the important message that you know short term savings DO NOT APPLY to children.Details
This years death toll of murdered, hanged, and otherwise suicidal very young children is a powerful indicator that we as a community are failing the weakest and most vulnerable among us.Details
Local CASA Volunteer’s Success Story
Contributed by: Fran G.
I was given my first case in February of this year a family of three children: A 13-year-old boy with mild autism, a 9-year-old girl, and a 4-year-old, all living with a Great Grandmother (74 years old).
The children have lived with their great grandmother for 4 years. There were so many questions that needed to be answered and I found that I had the time to find those answers. The lawyers, and social workers all cared for the family but lacked the time to get to know the family as well as I could.
I found, for example, that the 13-year-old boy had missed 54 days of school and had been late for his first hour class 34 times. There were several reasons, and all were easy to fix.
He needed an alarm clock, needed to stop spending the night at his favorite Aunt’s house, and needed to take responsibility. I told him he was not allowed to be late or miss school anymore. I was able to check daily via a computer how his grades were and his attendance, and so was he.Details
A 6-year-old boy whose battered body was found on the floor of a South Los Angeles home was the subject of roughly a dozen calls to Los Angeles County’s child abuse hotline alleging abuse or neglect, a county official briefed on the case told The Times on Friday.Details
A sheriff’s deputy zapped three children with a stun gun at an Illinois emergency youth shelter, threatening to sodomize one of them before choking a fourth child and throwing her in a closet, according to a federal civil-rights lawsuit.Details
A settlement has been reached in the civil lawsuit surrounding the disappearance of a 2-year-old foster child. The natural parents of Everlyse Cabrera sued Clark County when their daughter went missing from her North Las Vegas foster home three years ago.Details
Of the 23 richest countries, the United States has the highest rate of infant mortality, according to the CIA World Fact Book. And in Shelby County, Tenn., which encompasses Memphis, the state health department says a baby dies every 43 hours — a rate higher than that of any other major city. The babies most at risk come from impoverished parts of town with largely black populations.Details
Florida child abuse, and with it a rise in bullying. The state Department of Children and Families says there’s also an increase in the severity of the cases, with 59 deaths so far this year being investigated as possible child abuse.Details
Postscript… I too have had 4 year old and 7 year old suicides as a Hennepin County guardian ad-Litem and a judge that has shared with me the pages of documented Prozac, Ritalin, and other Psychotropics given to very young children. This conversation needs to take place at a higher level (where something can be done about it).Details
From a legal perspective the most under-protected persons in America are sexually abused children.
One study indicated that 11% of judges and 51% of prosecuting attorneys admitted that they had deliberately confused the child (witness) during the proceedings.
What this means in practice, is that the nine-year old girl sitting on the stand in the courtroom is being bullied by intense and deliberately confusing cross-examination about her abuse.
Everyone at the sysmposium agreed that children are not mentally capable of undergoing adult type cross examination, but it is clear that this still happens in many cases.Details