Petition update

Meeting with US House Representative, Jay Hoffman, Illinois

Patricia McKnight
Breese, IL, United States

Nov 13, 2014 — Hello Friends & Supporters, I could not pass up the opportunity to share with each of you an upcoming meeting. Prior to creating this petition, I had sent an email to a school friend of Robbie's (my common law) who just happens to be a Representative for St. Clair County, the same county I grew up in as a young girl, actually lived just about 8 miles from what is now his district office. Anyway, I addressed this amendment with him in the email and referenced the many studies I can use to justify the need for this law; including the influence on our nation's budget at more than $134 Billion every year, the physical impacts on children which are commonly displayed in their outward behaviors, the traumatic impact on the front lobe brain development and increasing how professionals can provide recovery assistance targeted more at rebuilding life after TERROR.

On November 25th, at 10:00 am I will be meeting with House Representative Hoffman and we will go over all the allowances and the specifics of creating this law and then hopefully, with all of your help & of course Representative Hoffman, to move this bill forward as quickly as possible.

This is huge my friends, this is what so many advocates & activist hope to achieve for their cause and it is certainly something that would address a deeper but more societal acceptable view in how these ugly and vicious attacks leave life lasting wounds which can be intensely life altering for survivors. As advocates, as a concerned society, about the level of violence and bullying that continues to invade and destroy the life of many youth and families around the globe, this is something we all need to get behind and encourage your friends, family, & followers to sign.

Think for a moment about a 6 year old child, let's say he's in first grade and he argues with the other children a lot. The teacher reports the behavior to the school principle and your child gets in trouble for bullying and being a disruption in class. As he goes onto second grade, the actions get a little more forceful from this same boy. Everyone knows he has behavioral issues and they want him checked out by a psychiatrist or a child behavioral specialist before he can come back to school. Parents of the other children are complaining, 'What is wrong with that child? The school board needs to do something to get him under control. He's been bullying my child and talking threats to harm him.'

Now the parents of this boy have no choice but to take him in as requested, so the counselor talks with the parents,.'So why do you think he's behaving this way?' The mother is quiet, says nothing, but looks at the counselor in a way she is very familial with. Dad begins to answer, 'I don't know, your job to figure out, isn't that what you get paid to do?' Now would you think instantly there is an unbalance of function and dominance in the household? Yes, right? A few weeks go by, child is back at school, the teacher's notice his behavior is different but his homework is rarely done properly or done at all. He seems as if he just doesn't care. Teacher finds out he's on medication for his behavior to 'straighten him out so he can pay attention and not distract the class.'

Teacher gets concerned about the young boy's growing disconnection to what's happening around him. She notes his days and how he's been doing. Takes it to her superior and they determine someone needs to look into the child's case. Perhaps there is something else bothering him. They make a teacher/parent meeting and they see Dad is angry about everything. Mom is very quiet and really doesn't say much at all. School decides to have a well check done on the child's behalf and DCFS is called.

When the worker shows up at the child's home unannounced she hears a lot of arguing in the home. She hears a man raging his voice and she gets concerned, calls the police for backup. Police arrive they hear the arguing and knock on the door, everything gets quiet. Dad answers the door, the child is in his room doing absolutely nothing, the room is a disaster, and there is a younger child with tears at the dinner table with Mom. Upon closer investigation of the children they find hand marks around the younger child's wrists and they find scratch marks on the older child's neck, they take the children. Parent's claim injustice. The younger child cries all the time while in care, the older child is quiet and says nothing at all. Their days go on and the workers have the chief talk with the older child. He doesn't want to say anything. He acts very timid around the man. He cringes in his chair when the chief's voice gets more forceful with him. Its not just a normal kind of 'Ah Oh' thing, it is more of a 'Please Don't Hurt Me' type of reaction. The chief knows how to direct conversation now and what questions to ask.
'Is there something scaring you when I do that? Is this happening in your house? Is someone scaring you, how do they scare you? Have they hurt you? Is that how the marks got on your neck? Now the child can talk, he can share yes he is scared, yes this did happen. Was there something else that might have caused him to back away? Has anyone ever touched you sexually? The child is not sure what that word actually means? He stays quiet, shrugs his shoulders. The chief asks, has anyone ever touched your body parts down there where you're underwear cover up? Now the child can say, yes and they let other people do it also?

How should this child's misbehaving be first seen as an outer cry for help? One that everyone can see but there are certain processes that have to be taken. Our laws say first that someone has to have a logical reason to be concerned. Then a person who has witnessed or heard things directly related to specific incidents, have to make the report. So grandma or Aunt Nancy who know their sister's household is being controlled by complete fear and they see the constant downhill spiral of their loved one, unless they specifically see something happen, most times you cannot convince someone in authority to get involved. However, with the 'Family Terrorist Act' - 'Trecia's Law' we break ground in a couple of ways.
1) reporting a case and having an updated review process of every case that is reported.
2) Teachers, counselors, other professionals will be more easily able to begin working on the process of the child's fears, rather than 'sexual abuse' which a child may not fully understand. If we can begin with the fear and work to just how bad that fear may be justified, then we can not only prosecute more cases, but we begin helping victims recover by talking about the fear,.

It is this my friends, along with all the studies we have to support the need for these changes in our reporting, reviewing, and processing of these types of cases. This I believe will provide a much quicker determination of concern, which can then focus on the needs of these families, especially the children who live under this dominating type of environment everyday. It helps in finding the right assistance and support, but also in the more extreme cases help the child BE SAFE. Help the victimized controlled parent begin the life rebuilding skills that are needed to take care of him/herself and the children. We may not be able to help and rescue every child every time, but with the multiples of homes controlled by violence, dysfunction, rage; we can begin providing a step in the right direction for their positive recovery and life building steps to strengthen their resilience and recovery.

Please help us pass this much needed law!! Help by sharing 'Family Terrorist Act' - 'Trecia's Law' across the country and largely to your political figures.

Thank you
Trish


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