Currently, we have a few things going. Here are the minutes of our last meeting.
Youth Voice Initiative March 18, 2017 Minutes
Call to Order: 3:03pm
Present: Courtney, Jonathan, Shawn, Mike, Lika
1) Background story and petition wording voted: Unanimously passed
2) Study on Trauma Informed Care & childhood trauma affecting brain development:
A) Courtney brought important articles regarding Trauma Informed Care, and how it is already implemented other places, and how trauma could come from anywhere, such as divorce, loss of employment, becoming homelessness, etc. She will be looking up information on who gave the training on this for prison & parole staff.
B) Shawn will be looking into the research done by the Blue Knot Foundation, whose mission is to empower people who suffered from childhood trauma. They have research going back 150 years.
C) Jonathan will be looking into the Help Guide Organization which offers self-help guides put together from professionals for survivors of childhood trauma and abuse, as well as to offer help to those who support survivors of trauma.
D) Mike will be looking into Healing Resources Info & the Dana Foundation about how childhood trauma & abuse is directly tied to the actual physical brain development as well as how it affects how information is processed.
E) Lika will be looking into Healthland, a branch of Time Magazine and NCBI/NIH on how survivors of childhood trauma can be more prone to various mental health disorders. It would be good if survivors of abuse had services paid for.
F) Barb (not present) will be offering her editing services for when we are ready to have an educational guide put together to teaching materials for the people working in the process leading up to incarceration as well as school counselors, and other personnel who deal with counseling survivors of violence.
1) How to pursue more awareness to get higher involvement and/or future fundraisers has been tabled until future notice.
2) No other new business.
1) Next meeting will be on the 4th Saturday, April 22, 2017 @ 3pm, due to the 3rd Saturday being Easter weekend.
2) Those wanting the informational articles regarding the Trauma Informed Care and how it is implemented should message Lika, to be able to get a copy sent.
3) For those who have experience with studying issues and making input into making educational information, please speak up to help out, having 2 or more people per topic would be helpful, to get a fuller perspective to go into the education packet. Your name will be listed as an author for this information.
Here is the information about Trauma Informed Care and how childhood trauma affects brain development, and we need people to help study each of these sections to be able to come together to make an education packet to give to Law Enforcement, Court System, School Nurse/Counselor's office, and other segments in social services to teach them about the effects of childhood abuse and how the brain does not develop the way it normally should. This is important to address, since there are certain checkpoints that may not be attained to bring into the real world as an adult, to be successful in relationships, higher education, and careers for the rest of their lives. Here is the info, and please help us round out each section, so we have at least 2 people studying each topic, to have the most well rounded education package to bring to the floor.
1) According to Blue Knot Foundation, whose mission is to empower people who suffered from childhood trauma, the research documents 150 years’ worth of studies regarding this topic. There are many psychological and psychiatric issues that may come up, due to enduring child abuse through the young, formative years.
2) Healthland, a branch of Time magazine, talks about how child abuse sets up the brain to be more susceptible to future mental illnesses and disorders.
3) Healing Resources Info has at least a couple of articles out about how early childhood trauma can affect developmental issues, such as the fact that children’s brains have plasticity that is still flexible, where it loses it as time goes on. This will affect how stress is handled, because the normal attachment and emotional bond that happens from infant with primary care taker is not present. Those who grew up with abuse in their homes are at greater risk of entering other traumatic situations as adults.
4) The Dana Foundation, which is an organization that is dedicated to bringing, “your gateway to responsible information about the brain” talks about the neurological effects of childhood trauma and abuse, which affects people a whole lifetime.
5) The National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), a branch of the National Health Institute (NIH), talks about the broad range of abuse, neglect, lack of income, etc. takes a toll on the psyche, and does indeed make a correlation with future health issues, from immunological to pain, to poverty issues. This shows that even the federal public health sector understands the issues with these disorders.
6) Here is a link from Help Guide Organization, which is a self-help guide for those who are survivors of childhood trauma and abuse. This may be helpful for those who support those who have lived through this type of abuse. Our entire legal system needs to keep this in mind, when creating, enforcing, practicing, and interpreting our laws.
Trauma Informed Care – A packet for therapists, counselors, & general public:
Studies show that childhood trauma leads to brain anomalies, where proper development is hindered, altered, etc. and how therapists and group leaders can assess if a person has had abuse issues. It is used in prisons, to determine the root of prisoner behaviors.
Trauma informed care is grounded in and directed by a thorough understanding of the neurological, biological, psychological, and social effects of trauma and the prevalence of these experiences in persons who seek and receive mental health services.
Here is an article from a psychologist about how trauma affects behavior, trust issues, and how human relationships are also negatively affected into adulthood, so, the thing of being told, “You’re an adult, now”, is of absolutely no use, what so ever. It can take years to overcome a single trauma, depending on how bad the PTSD sets in.
We need to assign people to a group, to look more into this, to come up with an education packet to give to the legal system before incarceration, as we can learn from the Menendez brothers who killed their father for beating their mother, and threatening to kill her. They were tried as cold hearted killers, when it was trauma from domestic violence. Since the prison system already is putting this into place, and the lawyers, especially DA’s and Public Defenders, judges, and civilian therapy places that need to learn this process.
If anyone knows any teachers who can help develop this, it would be great, but, we can put this together by brainstorming, but, everyone needs to be willing to do their part to learn about how this relates and how it will affect people. This needs attention.
This is a lot to take in, but, it is important. Now, here is a push we can all do. This is a petition to stiffen up on those who sexually prey on our children, and all too often, the sentencing is way too easy, and the children get returned to the very environment they were abused in, with the perpetrator still able to get easy access to the children, to keep the sex abuse going. If they do not go into an in-house treatment program immediately, the consequences can be devastating to more and more children.
I need as many people IN WISCONSIN as possible to print one copy of this petition, and get it signed. When finished, please mail it back to me through snail mail. I will reimburse you for postage, if you need it. Please copy this into a word document, and print this, below. It will be a 2 page document, the 1st with the background story, and the 2nd being the actual petition. We are in dire need of Wisconsin residents to sign this.
Background issues to support stiffer punishments on those who sexually perpetrate our children:
As advocates who make hospital visits for those who go in for E.R. for sexual assaults, we see that way too often, the male perpetrators of female children are let out way too easily by the judicial system. Those who perpetrate our children need to be kept away from not only their victims, but other children as well, to prevent future child victims by the same perpetrator, especially if the offender is a classic pedophile (no gender preference).
A man was charged with a sexual assault on a child back in 2005.
In 2013, he sexually assaulted his 4 year old son. He served 1.5 years.
He then went to live with a friend in 2015, and subsequently, sexually assaulted his friend’s 5 and 6 year old children.
These children were threatened, forced to use sex toys on themselves and each other, then forced perform sex acts with him and with each other.
He was set to serve a life sentence, and only served 2 years.
His most recent victim is a 16 year old girl, who he strangled her during the rape, and is looking at 9 counts of felony charges.
Although he was ordered to stay away from all minor children, since he took both male and female victims, he violated this grossly.
This is not the only case, it’s just one of many examples of those who perpetrate female children, already do not get stiff enough sentencing, as described above.
We, again as advocates, understands that sexual abuse by a teacher or other person of power is damaging, and is just as if not more damaging to teenage boys.
Because of the the maturity and understanding of this type of relationship has negative consequences on our young boys, since it is assumed that all boys want and enjoy sex from teachers or other leaders of groups they participate in.
There are also few supports in place for the male children to get support, therapy, and long term help to get through the situation.
As if the sentencing on those who perpetrate female children isn’t strong enough, there are even fewer sentencing among female sex offenders who target our children.
This is why we demand that upon the first arrest for sexual assaults on children must go through a 2-3 year in house therapy action for sex offenders to be let out into the public, upon being deemed low risk (not safe) by those in charge of the programs. If they do not complete this program in house, there is a great likelihood that they will not do it on their own, just to assault more child victims, which is why it needs to be in-house. If they refuse, the clock keeps getting reset until the offender cooperates and starts the anti-abuse therapy sessions and finish the program successfully before they get out. They must also be mandated to stay away from minor children, and if a parent, have placement/custodial rights removed, permanently. If visitation is allowed, by case by case situation, the visitation must be supervised by a trusted adult who will protect the children and not let the offender out of their site while the children are present.
We, the undersigned citizens and residents of the State of Wisconsin, urge your support of Lika’s Law, to put in stiffer penalties in place for all sex offenders, both male and female, who perpetrate our children. The psychological and emotional damage to their child victims are too great to keep allowing these perpetrators off with little to no consequence. As our elected officials, we urge you to support these measures:
A) A 2 – 3 year in-house therapy program to instill in them the reasoning to why their actions are/were wrong.
B) For refusal to go through the program, the sentence will not be counted until they go into the program.
C) Strong mandates keeping the released perpetrators away from children, to prevent further victimization from happening.
D) If they are a parent, lose placement/custody with only supervised visitations, to prevent repeated offenses on their children.
Print name Sign Name City, State
As a measure to get signatures for those who may want to support this issue, but don't want their name to be public, please encourage them to sign the e-petition, where the option is there to keep their names anonymous, so their signatures will pop up as "Anonymous, WI" - Not even I can view their names, if they choose the anonymous option. Here is the link, and please, I encourage everyone to search to get at least 5 Wisconsin resident signatures for the e-petition. Here is the link:
Thank you in advance, for your help. Every little effort counts. Please feel free to email me with any questions. Please put YVI or Lika's Law 4 Wisconsin in the subject line, to make it pop up.
Let's make this trend: #LikasLaw4Wisconsin