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Barriere Bits, Issue #021 Child Abuse Survivors Prone to Headaches
February 17, 2009
Welcome to Barriere Bits, the child abuse information e-zine that will provide you with international child abuse information.
In this issue, you'll find child abuse news from:
The Hong Kong study involved 18,000 participants and encompassed 10 countries.
My Comments: "Poor coping skills" sound so demeaning. I'm not a scientist, or do I have a doctorate to my name. What I am is a pragmatist and a child abuse survivor who used to suffer from terrible headaches myself, even when my coping skills were well honed. I believe there is a great deal more involved than a lack of "coping skills" when it comes to adult-onset headaches. We are only now beginning to learn about the brain. I believe researches will eventually find a far more physiological explanation than one that, in my opinion, comes way too close to suggesting that child abuse survivors are weak-minded.
"Media was seized, computer media," stated Ottawa police Staff-Sgt. Monique Perras. "In one instance, for example, there were over 20,000 pictures of child sexual abuse."
Police estimate that approximately 65,000 computers in Canada are actively involved in the distribution of child pornography. Since August 2006, a provincial strategy has resulted in the completion of more than 5,800 investigations of Internet crimes against children, which have in turn resulted in 2,468 charges laid against 809 people.
"These pictures are from children and they're getting younger and younger," Perras told CTV Ottawa. "These children have been sexually abused, raped. These are our children. This is not a victimless crime," Perras went on to say.
My Comments: I couldn't agree more with Staff-Sgt. Perras. Computer images that depict child sexual abuse means that children have been sexually assaulted. I'm proud that my country is utilizing technology to help ensure the safety of children around the globe. And don't for one second think this is a problem unique to Canada. Internet child pornography is a worldwide problem, which means that every country needs to use all available resources to protect society's greatest asset: our children.
My Comments: Double thumbs up to Professor Sanders! Parent education is vital in reducing cases of child abuse. Not only does education help parents with their parenting skills, it also instils confidence in those parents; a confident and educated-in-parenting mother and father are far less likely to abuse their children. I sincerely hope such programs become widely available around the world.
My Comments: This is one bill that has bi-partisan support, in part, because of a local case of severe child abuse: 15-month-old Eryk Woodruff, who was almost beaten to death by a babysitter who was a friend of the family. The toddler's abuser was convicted and sentenced to the maximum 10-year prison term, but with good behaviour, could be out in 5.
I don't disagree with longer sentences; I'm all for them. What concerns me is the economic crisis currently in full swing in the United States. When I hear news reports that 40,000 inmates in California will be released into society because of overcrowding, when I learn that states across the country are finding themselves unable to balance their budgets, when I turn on my television to reports that some states cannot make their payrolls or issue tax refund cheques to their tax paying citizens, I wonder how all of this will impact the individual states' ability to continue to house, feed, clothe and medically take care of inmates with lower minimum terms, let alone those who would be facing longer terms.
My Comments: As I stated in my original comments in the December 2008 issue, Social Services agencies cannot hide behind laws intended to help them protect children in order to protect themselves from blatant disregard for known dangers to children in care. Now that the ruling has paved the way for children to sue such agencies, it will remain to be seen if this case will spur additional suits from children who were victimized in and by the foster system.
My Comments: I will place this Sri Lanka help line number with all the hotline numbers on my site so that my visitors can find it. Hotline numbers from around the globe can be found on my child abuse stories page at Hotline Numbers.
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Darlene Barriere is a child abuse survivor, a violence and abuse prevention educator and author of On My Own Terms, A Memoir. She lives in semi-arid Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada with her husband, John.
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