October 2017

Editorial: Policies must support families to break ACE cycle [herald-dispatch.com]

For many years, our drug-abuse prevention and dropout prevention efforts have focused on high school students. But as educators and health professionals dig deeper into these complex issues, they are learning that many of the problems that lead to substance abuse and academic failure often start much earlier than high school or even middle school. Research also is showing that difficult experiences in a child's life outside the classroom can have a greater impact than we realize. [For more...

The Inequality Beneath the Sexual-Harassment Headlines [theatlantic.com]

The Weinstein Effect strikes again. Following The New York Times and The New Yorker ’s revelations about the film executive and alleged serial sexual harasser Harvey Weinstein, Lockhart Steele of Vox Media, the screenwriter James Toback , the critic Leon Wieseltier, and, on Thursday, Mark Halperin of MSNBC have found themselves outed and, in some cases, fired for alleged past behavior. Preceding Weinstein were reports about alleged harassment at Tinder and Uber , and the alleged predatory...

This City Found a Way to Get Everyone Involved in Urban Planning [yesmagazine.org]

When Monica Palmquist moved to Cortez, Colorado, in 2010, she was shocked to find that the Hispanic population in a town with a Spanish name had almost no presence in the community’s civic life. Born in Mexico, Palmquist had spent most of her life in the United States, in cities where the Hispanic community was visible and active. In Cortez, where she worked as a community organizer, they were rarely ever seen. “We were called ‘The Invisible Community,’” Palmquist says. “We don’t get...

2018 Conference in NM - Trauma, ACES, and Healing. Registration is open!

Good Morning All, Our registration is open for our 2018 Conference. Please consider joining us, learning something new, and adding to the impact we can make as a community. NM is a great place to visit and the location is utterly gorgeous. If you have questions email me directly at ekawam.naswnm@gmail.com. Please spread the word with others too who might be interested. My humble appreciation in advance for your time and consideration. Register here today:...

Smarter justice: Scotland has been praised for its efforts to move towards more community sentences [holyrood.com]

Scotland has one of the highest prison populations per capita in Western Europe, but it has been dropping in the past few years from a high in 2011-12. Initiatives such as ‘No Knives, Better Lives’ and the work of the Violence Reduction Unit (VRU) have been successful in tackling violent crime in Scotland and the crime rate has continually fallen. And although the Scottish Government could rarely be accused of making changes to the justice system too quickly, often taking years to consult,...

Getting $50 Million More for California After-school Programs Took Coalition 3 Years of Lobbying [jjie.iorg]

LOS ANGELES — California after-school programs statewide were able to breathe a small sigh of relief this year after Gov. Jerry Brown set aside an extra $50 million for them from the general budget. Getting SB 78 passed took three years of lobbying by a coalition that included the Los Angeles Unified School District board, the Los Angeles City Council , the Los Angeles Police Department and more than 10 after-school programs like Beyond the Bell , After School All Stars and LA’s BEST . “Part...

By understanding trauma, Wisconsin youth find path to healing [jsonline.com]

It was nine years ago, at the age of 11, that Meggi Lampen was sexually abused. It was seven years ago that she first told anyone about it. She withdrew and repressed what had happened. In the back of her mind, she knew something wasn’t right. But she had no context to put it in – or let it out. "At the time I was like, I don’t know if this is normal,” Lampen said. “I don’t know if people come into other people’s beds at night and do that." [For more on this story by Rory Linnane, go to...

Time Spent in Solitary Confinement Drops Dramatically in Illinois Youth Facilities [propublica.org]

After years of sending youths to solitary confinement for days, weeks and even months at a time, the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice has taken drastic steps to reduce the time young offenders spend in isolation. The decision to move away from solitary confinement, or segregation, came as part of a consent decree in federal court between the department and the American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois. But top department officials also said the research was too powerful to ignore.

How I Can Offer Reparations in Direct Proportion to My White Privilege [yesmagazine.org]

I had a fascinating breakfast conversation with my 11-year-old daughter a few days back. The night before I had a fitful dream—one that was short on plot and imagery, but chock-full of emotion. In this case, the feeling was of a deep, immovable sorrow. When I awoke, it didn’t take long to recognize that the article I’d been working on—this article—was definitely working on me, too. During breakfast I knew my daughter could tell I wasn’t on solid ground. She’s a sensitive soul, and I figured...

What's Still Missing From Trump's Plan to Tackle the Opioid Crisis [theatlantic.com]

“Together, we will face this challenge as a national family.” On Thursday, President Trump gave a forceful—and at times surprising—speech outlining the White House’s new response to the opioid crisis and the announcement of a national public health emergency. The speech, delivered in tandem with a speech from First Lady Melania Trump to survivors of drug abuse, at times featured uncharacteristic signaling of empathy from the president on the issue of drug use. But whether those displays of...

The Marshall Project Presents: We Are Witnesses [themarshallproject.org]

The impact of America’s punishment policies is often measured in numbers: there are now 2.2 million people in our jails and prisons; one in a hundred and fifteen adults is confined behind bars; our inmate population is 4 times larger than it was in 1980. We Are Witnesses, a collection of short videos, offers a very different sort of calculation: the human cost of locking up so many citizens for so many years. The project comprises 18 videos, each between two and six minutes long. Taken...

When Kids Have to Act Like Parents, It Affects Them for Life [theatlantic.com]

Laura Kiesel was only six years old when she became a parent to her infant brother. At home, his crib was placed directly next to her bed, so that when he cried at night, she was the one to pick him up and sing him back to sleep. She says she was also in charge of changing his diapers and making sure he was fed every day. For the majority of her early childhood, she remembers that she tended to his needs while her own mother was in the depths of heroin addiction. From as early as she can...

Projects Aim to Improve Community Well-Being in Milwaukee Through Health Evaluations [wuwm.com]

Earlier this year, Lake Effect spoke with researchers Dmitri Topitzes and Joshua Mersky about their research on the effects of Adverse Childhood Experiences, also known as ACEs. These encompass a variety of things that can happen in childhood - including different forms of abuse, neglect, and household dysfunctions. Research has found that ACEs can have a huge impact on a person’s ability to succeed later in life. Dr. Dmitri Topitzes and Dr. Joshua Mersky are both associate professors at the...

For Some Youths, ‘Minor’ Offenses Lead to Major Sentences in Adult Prison [propublica.org]

Seventeen-year-old Jaylan Banks punched a guard at the Illinois Youth Center at Harrisburg as they struggled over a bottle of body wash. David Hayes, 18, spat in a guard’s face. And 18-year-old Lavell Staples was accused of shoving a guard as he tried to force his way out of his room. A few years ago, these incidents would have cost the teenagers their privileges, earned them a stint in solitary confinement or added time to their juvenile sentences. But these young men are among almost a...

The ‘Problem Child’ Is a Child, Not a Problem [nytimes.com]

Matt Hannon was in preschool when he started getting into trouble. Teachers quickly labeled his mischievous behavior — like cutting his hair under the table — problematic. His kindergarten teacher warned that if Matt didn’t stop using “potty words,” she would make him do his work in the bathroom. His first-grade teacher forced Matt to copy the phrase “I will not blurt out in circle” 100 times. Matt began to dread school and developed serious separation anxiety. His acting-out got worse. “I...

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