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Protecting Our Kids

November 6, 2019  |  Comments Off on Protecting Our Kids

Staff At Alexander Youth Network Are Learning & Advocating for Abuse Prevention

Rod J and Jacob W

Recently, two Alexander Youth Network staff members attended the Sexual Abuse Training Seminar hosted by Philadelphia Insurance Companies in Concord, NC. The two-day training focused on educating attendees on several topics related to sexual abuse including common errors and misconceptions about sexual abuse characteristics of abusers, peer to per abuse, and how to identify a problem and seek the appropriate help and provide support for the individual involved.

The session was led by Gregory S. Love. J.D., Director of Abuse Prevention Systems at Love and Norris, Attorneys at Law.

Did you know?

  • There are 60 million survivors of sexual abuse in the United States

  • 1 in 4 are female. 1 in 6  aremale.

  • 66% of survivors do not disclose the abuse until adulthood

  • Men usually do not report or talk about their abuse.

The two biggest takeaways from our stay were realizing the short and long term impact of abuse in relation to the work we do at Alexander Youth Network and how staff can actively prevent abuse with general awareness.

For the children at Alexander who have survived abuse, it is important for our staff to realize that their trust has been broken as well as their perception of safety. It is our mission at Alexander to rebuild that trust and create a new safety net of support to protect the child for the future.

Having members of our staff attend the training helps solidify safety systems that we have to actively prevent abuse. The training highlighted five key elements to advocate for children and prevent abuse:

    1. Sexual Abuse Awareness training with staff – Providing staff with insight into common errors and misconceptions while thinking about sexual abuse but also helping identify children that may be at risk along with signs that abuse may already be happening.
    2. Skillful Screenings – Providing additional screenings can help prevent abusers from seeking employment or volunteer opportunities.
    3. Appropriate Criminal Background Checks – Less than 10% of abusers encounter the criminal justice system and may pass a background check.
    4. Tailored Policies and Procedures – This includes having all staff and visitors wear identification while on-site or having a consistent and streamlined policy for reporting to the appropriate authorities.
    5. Monitoring & Oversight of all programs and staff – Many abusers may be someone that the child knows and trusts. Deferential defenders are account for 94% of sexual abuse and commonly are within the safety net of the child.

The training was a reminder for Alexander Youth Network staff that advocating and acting to prevent sexual abuse is a constant job. We remain dedicated to supporting the children who have experienced abused and will continue to advocate for abuse prevention.

Rodrigues Fruster, PRTF Charlotte Lead Behavioral Health Counselor and Alexander Leadership Institute Member attended the event along with Jacob Wingfield, PRTF Greensboro Lead Behavioral Health Counselor.

Written by Emily Gordon. 


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