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Medical Whistleblower Advocacy Network

Human Rights Defenders

“All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.”

 Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Article 1

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HR 911 - a bill in front of the US Congress

The widespread allegations of abuse in residential treatment for youth has lead to federal investigations by the Government Accountability Office (GAO), the investigative arm of Congress, and Congressional hearings in October 2007 and April 2008 and resulted in the proposal of H.R. 5876 - Stop Child Abuse in Residential Programs, later H.R. 911.  Representative George Miller is reintroducing this bill again now in 2011.  Please support the passage of this important legislation which will help protect children from abuse and neglect.  Having Federal involvement will not only help to bring awareness, but also help to fill oversight gaps in some of the states with the least licensing requirements for these facilities. 

The full text of the original bill can be viewed here and previous votes from 2009 are available here.

Please reach out to your representative

 

The GOA  testimony reports on residential treatment abuse shows four striking patterns:

 

* Untrained program staff;

* Misleading marketing of programs to parents;

* The occurrence of abuse before the fatalities occurred;

* Negligent operating practices.

 

There are major gaps in licensing and oversight of residential treatment facilities for youth, so that many have been able to operate virtually unregulated. To help fix this major failure, H.R. 911 proposes that these programs fall under federal regulations. 

Download GAO Report October 2007.

Download GAO Report May 2008.

“When the government violates the people's rights, insurrection is, for the people and for each portion of the people, the most sacred of the rights and the most indispensible of duties.”

  Marquis De Lafayette

“A community is democratic only when the humblest and weakest person can enjoy the highest civil, economic, and social rights that the biggest and most powerful possess.”

 A. Philip Randolph

“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.”
 
― Leo Buscaglia

Medical Whistleblower Advocacy Network

MEDICAL WHISTLEBLOWER ADVOCACY NETWORK

P.O. 42700 

Washington, DC 20015

MedicalWhistleblowers (at) gmail.com

CONTACT

"Never impose on others what you would not choose for yourself."  Confucius

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat."

Theodore Roosevelt- Excerpt from the speech "Citizenship In A Republic", delivered at the Sorbonne, in Paris, France on 23 April, 1910

Vicarious Trauma

"We believe that the people are the source of all governmental power; that the authority of the people is to be extended, not restricted."

-Barbara Jordan

Vicarious Trauma

A formula that we have found helpful comes from "The ABCs of self-care are Awareness, Balance and Connection" (Saakvitne & Pearlman, 1996 - see the reference below).

The ABCs are as follows:

Awareness: You must first be able to identify the signs and symptoms of unhealthy stress and the effects of trauma (whether experienced first- or second-hand). This requires awareness.

Balance: Seek balance among a number of different types of activities, including work, personal and family life, rest and leisure.

Connection: Build connections and supportive relationships with your coworkers, friends, family and community. All the work you do to create a better society will have little meaning if you don’t experience positive and healthy connections along the way to this better place.

The New Tactics in Human Rights: A Resource for Practitioners has a brief section on "Self-Care: Caring for your most valuable resource" on page 164-165 of the book. You will find some questions that can be used to open discussion in pairs, in small groups or within your organization to take time to discuss the ways in which you are coping — individually and collectively — with the stress of doing human rights work. 

 

In the tiger's mouth: an empowerment guide for social action, Katrina Shields, 1991, Millennium Books, Newtown, N.S.W ISBN: 0855748923 (pbk.) This book uides you through the big issues that show up in activism: how to avoid burn-out, network, create stable groups, as well as how to approach listeners with bad news that they may not want to hear. The guide includes exercises that encourage discovery and growth, both for individuals and groups.

Transforming the Pain: A Workbook on Vicarious Traumatization. Karen W. Saakvitne, Laurie Ann Pearlman, and the staff of the Traumatic Stress Institute. Published by W. W. Norton & Co., Inc.: New York, 1996. A practical, how-to guide on secondary traumatization designed for all levels of professionals, paraprofessionals, and volunteers who work with traumatized persons. Contains exercises for individuals and groups that come from the authors' experience giving workshops on this topic.

"We believe that the people are the source of all governmental power; that the authority of the people is to be extended, not restricted."

-Barbara Jordan

Vicarious Trauma

A formula that we have found helpful comes from "The ABCs of self-care are Awareness, Balance and Connection" (Saakvitne & Pearlman, 1996 - see the reference below).

The ABCs are as follows:

Awareness: You must first be able to identify the signs and symptoms of unhealthy stress and the effects of trauma (whether experienced first- or second-hand). This requires awareness.

Balance: Seek balance among a number of different types of activities, including work, personal and family life, rest and leisure.

Connection: Build connections and supportive relationships with your coworkers, friends, family and community. All the work you do to create a better society will have little meaning if you don’t experience positive and healthy connections along the way to this better place.

The New Tactics in Human Rights: A Resource for Practitioners has a brief section on "Self-Care: Caring for your most valuable resource" on page 164-165 of the book. You will find some questions that can be used to open discussion in pairs, in small groups or within your organization to take time to discuss the ways in which you are coping — individually and collectively — with the stress of doing human rights work. 

 

In the tiger's mouth: an empowerment guide for social action, Katrina Shields, 1991, Millennium Books, Newtown, N.S.W ISBN: 0855748923 (pbk.) This book uides you through the big issues that show up in activism: how to avoid burn-out, network, create stable groups, as well as how to approach listeners with bad news that they may not want to hear. The guide includes exercises that encourage discovery and growth, both for individuals and groups.

Transforming the Pain: A Workbook on Vicarious Traumatization. Karen W. Saakvitne, Laurie Ann Pearlman, and the staff of the Traumatic Stress Institute. Published by W. W. Norton & Co., Inc.: New York, 1996. A practical, how-to guide on secondary traumatization designed for all levels of professionals, paraprofessionals, and volunteers who work with traumatized persons. Contains exercises for individuals and groups that come from the authors' experience giving workshops on this topic.