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December 2011 Archives

CT State Rep. Diana Urban Plans to Hold Public Hearing to Gather Information on So-Called Mandatory Reporting

Connecticut does not require college coaches to report suspected child abuse, but the scandal at Penn State has some state officials pushing to mandate they notify authorities if they think children are being harmed. State Rep. Diana Urban plans to hold a public hearing next month to gather information about so-called mandatory reporting, which would shape legislation during the upcoming session of the General Assembly. She also wants to consider a statewide policy governing the protection of children who interact with university athletic programs, given a scandal involving an assistant basketball coach fired by Syracuse University.

Child Sex Abuse Makes Us All Mandated Reporters

Tremont Sheldon Robinson Mahoney saw this article written by Susan Campbell of the Hartford Courant and thought it brought up an interesting point.  She has written many articles on sexual abuse and different sexual abuse scandals. The article follows, but we thought it would be helpful to define a mandated reporter.  Under Connecticut law, the following people are mandated reporters of suspected child abuse: doctors, nurses, medical examiners, dentists, dental hygienists, psychologists, coaches, school teachers, school principals, school guidance counselors, school paraprofessionals, social workers, police officers, juvenile or adult probation and /or parole officers, members of the clergy, pharmacists, physical therapists, optometrists, chiropractors, podiatrists,

Hard Journey Up From Childhood Sex Abuse

How bad does a childhood have to be to disqualify someone from holding a job, maintaining intimate relationships or raising a child?
I ask because the question arose recently in the unfolding disaster of the Glastonbury men who adopted nine sons, and then were charged with sexually abusing two of them. News stories said one of the men -- George Harasz -- had trauma in his background that might have affected his ability to be a good parent.

Philly sportswriter accused of abuse decades ago

With all the media attention given to the Penn State and Syracuse scandals, more victims are finding coverage to come forward even long after the incident.  The victims of came forward to not only expose the perpetrator, but also highlight the shortcomings of time limits associated with the statute of limitations. Currently under  Connecticut law, any person who claims damages as a result of being sexually abused, sexually assaulted, or sexually exploited as a child has until 30 years past the age of majority (typically until age 48) in which to file a claim in court.  Below is the news story. A veteran sportswriter and columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News was accused in a newspaper report Tuesday of molesting three girls and a boy in the 1970s, including his niece, who is now a prosecutor.

The Twice-Victimized of Sexual Assault

Nearly every woman I know can recall one or more instances in which she was sexually assaulted, harassed, threatened, inappropriately touched or even raped. Yet few told anyone about it at the time, or reported it to the police. I have clear memories of three such episodes from my childhood, one of which involved a man who owned a store in my neighborhood. Not knowing at age 11 anything about reproduction (in 1952, expectant teachers had to take leave when they "showed"), I was terrified that I could become pregnant from having been forced to touch his penis. I had trouble sleeping, and I avoided the block where the store was. Yet, fearing that the assault was somehow my fault, I said nothing to my parents. Experts on sexual assault and rape report that even today, despite improvements in early sex education and widespread publicity about sexual assaults, the overwhelming majority of both felony and misdemeanor cases never come to public or legal attention.

Coaching Gives Abusers Opportunity and Trust

  When details of sexual abuse allegations against two prominent college assistants -- Penn State's Jerry Sandusky and Syracuse's Bernie Fine -- became public last month, the news hit sports like a thunderbolt. But sports as an environment for sexual abuse is hardly new. Experts say it has all the significant ingredients that can lead to such abuse: coaches have close relationships with children and unsupervised access to them, while holding a position of trust and authority that can often keep children from reporting the problems to their parents or other authority figures.

Former NHL player to testify at hearing focused on sex abuse following Penn State scandal

WASHINGTON -- A former National Hockey League player who rocked the Canadian sports world with sexual abuse accusations against a former coach is the marque witness at a congressional hearing Tuesday examining such abuse in the wake of the Penn State scandal. The story of Sheldon Kennedy, whose NHL career began in 1989 with the Detroit Red Wings, was back in the news last week after his former coach in junior hockey pleaded guilty to sexual assaults involving two other former players, including NHL star Theoren Fleury. The coach, Graham James, already served more than three years in prison for abusing other players he coached, including Kennedy. James was quietly pardoned for his crimes in 2007, leading to public outcry.

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