We Keep Hearing About Josh Duggar. What About the Victims?

The news just broke that Josh Duggar, the oldest son of the popular 19 Kids and Counting Duggar family, has acknowledged that as a teenager, he was investigated for molesting underage girls. Reports state that following Josh’s confession to his father, over a year went by before the incident was reported to the police. In the meantime, the family sought counseling for Josh and for those “affected by his actions.” This incident makes two things very clear – that child sexual abuse occurs more frequently …

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A Strong Finish to Child Abuse Prevention Month

By Mary Elizabeth Huggins Child Abuse Prevention Month ended on a strong note in Louisiana. On April 30, the Louisiana Office of Juvenile Justice partnered with Child Advocacy Services to train 12 supervisors to become authorized facilitators of Darkness to Light’s Stewards of Children program. These new facilitators are just the beginning — the Office of Juvenile Justice hopes to soon have their entire staff armed with the tools provided by the Stewards of Children training, enabling them to prevent, recognize, and react responsibly to child …

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We all have responsibility in protecting children

Excerpt from Missoulian.com. By: BART KLIKA I remember feeling helpless, but, man, I had been there before. Watching a 20-something father trying to convince his screaming and kicking daughter that it was time to leave the park reminded me of the countless times I have been faced with a similar dilemma. As a bystander, I wanted to help, but how? Should I go talk to the dad? Should I ignore the situation altogether – after all, shouldn’t I mind my own darn business? In the …

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Surviving and Thriving: Sexual abuse survivor looks to spread awareness

Excerpt from The Daily Times. When Rhonda Stinnett first saw the news of a recent court case — wherein a Blount County man was sentenced to probation after the alleged physical and sexual abuse of three young children — she felt sick. Then she felt anger, and then, finally, resolve. Armed with that resolve, she feels moved to share her own experience, in hopes that other children will be spared from the pain she endured. “Something inside me just clicked,” says Stinnett. “I could not …

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It’s Not About Football: Why the discussion around Jerry Sandusky, Joe Paterno, and Penn State needs to change

Last year, the documentary “Happy Valley” premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. This award-winning film examines the abuse scandal at Penn State, the environment in which it happened, and the emotional aftermath felt by the community. Aside from offering a ground level view of the events and attitudes surrounding an event that shook the foundation of the Centre County community, the film offers a tremendous opportunity to talk openly about child sexual abuse. On April 16, Darkness to Light (D2L) and the Medical University of …

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Baby role-play: A potentially abusive fetish flourishing on Instagram

Excerpt from The Washington Post. A group of Instagram users are creating strange fictional relationships using photos of other people’s children. Often the accounts are anonymous or private. They are filled with photos of babies and kids, presumably stolen from social media sites. These are mostly amateur shots — say, from a family’s trip to the beach or a baby toddling in the backyard — not professional photos. In comments, the fantasy comes to life. Users have conversations pretending to be the parent or the …

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In hope of helping others, delegate reveals abuse as child

Excerpt from baltimoresun.com Delegate C.T. Wilson stepped to the podium of a state Senate committee during a routine hearing, about to confess a secret. He took a deep breath. “I don’t really, really want to be here,” he said. Wearing a gray suit, years removed from his daily nightmare, Wilson told the senators that as a child, his adoptive father repeatedly beat and then raped him. “I can’t describe to you the pain of being beaten, sodomized and molested for years,” he said. Between ages …

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Punishing the victims: Sexually exploited kids in the U.S.

Excerpt from trust.org On March 16, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights of the Organization of American States held an extraordinary hearing. It was an examination of the United States government’s treatment of American girls and boys who are victims of commercial sexual exploitation. The petitioners, led by Kerry Kennedy of the RFK Center for Human Rights and Malika Saada Saar from Rights4Girls, told the Commission about the practice in dozens of states of police arresting underage kids on charges of prostitution. Instead of being …

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The NFL Confronts Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault

Recently, the National Football League provided to the public a moving presentation on domestic violence and sexual assault that was given to all 32 clubs. Using the voices and experience of coaches and players, the NFL addresses the seriousness of these issues, their long-reaching consequences, and the need to actively work to create safer communities for women and children. You’ll see many of D2L’s philosophies echoed throughout the presentation – talking about it, bystander intervention, and the importance of prevention, to name a few. We …

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Emotional Trauma’s Surprising Effect on Children

Excerpt from clevelandclinic.org Traumatic events in children’s lives can have the same effect as head trauma, a new study says. The study, published recently in the Journal of Psychiatric Research, finds that emotional trauma at a young age may cause changes to the brain that are similar to head trauma. The connection between emotional trauma’s and physical trauma’s effect on the brain is an increase in a protein called S100B. S100B is a protein usually found in the brain. But when the protein makes its …

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