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The Charity

Alison Arngrim
Alison Arngrim - Actress and Activist, part of PROTECT's Grassroots Advisory Board, which taps the creative talents and expertise of leaders from diverse fields, including communications, politics, fundraising and community organizing. Members advise and assist the organization on its growth, effectiveness and reach.

About the Charity -- PROTECT.org

PROTECT's nonpartisan agenda takes the best ideas of tough-minded children's advocates and turns them into well-defined, winnable national and state campaigns. We look to law enforcement, legal and medical experts, child protection professionals, and our membership to identify a pro-child, anti-crime agenda that truly makes a difference in children’s lives. We use proven modern political campaign tools to fight for children in a better, smarter way. Although we can only focus on a manageable amount of work at any given time, below please find a general description of PROTECT’s agenda.

Secure Resources To Fight Child Pornography and Enable Child Rescue: Production and distribution of child pornography is a global, lucrative business. However, today U.S. law enforcement has the technology to locate and rescue hundreds of thousands of child sexual abuse victims by tracking child pornography back through the Internet directly to the criminals. In 30-40% of child pornography cases, law enforcement finds evidence of local child victims. Last year, investigators identified over 300,000 computers trafficking in brutal movies and images of child rape and abuse, yet less than two percent were investigated, due to lack of funding.

Equal Justice: Studies show that 80-90% of sexually abused children are victimized by adults they know, not by strangers or kidnappers. These crimes—by family members, clergy, educators and predators in youth programs—take a horrible toll on children and in turn society, through crime and social problems later. Unfortunately, some states provide lesser penalties to these offenders because it is “incest.” PROTECT’s Circle of Trust Campaign is closing these loopholes state by state to eliminate this differential treatment.

Children’s Rights in the Legal System:

Legal representation for children: Accused child molesters get legal representation, but in most states child victims are thrown into a high-states legal fight as the only party in the courtroom without competent legal support. If they lose, they might be the only crime victims ordered to go home with their rapist. PROTECT believes there is a role for volunteer children advocates, but never as a substitute for actual legal representation.

Equal Justice: Studies show that 80-90% of sexually abused children are victimized by adults they know, not by strangers or kidnappers. These crimes—by family members, clergy, educators and predators in youth programs—take a horrible toll on children and in turn society, through crime and social problems later. Unfortunately, some states provide lesser penalties to these offenders because it is “incest.” PROTECT’s Circle of Trust Campaign is closing these loopholes state by state to eliminate this differential treatment.

Children’s Rights in the Legal System:

Legal representation for children: Accused child molesters get legal representation, but in most states child victims are thrown into a high-states legal fight as the only party in the courtroom without competent legal support. If they lose, they might be the only crime victims ordered to go home with their rapist. PROTECT believes there is a role for volunteer children advocates, but never as a substitute for actual legal representation.

Demand accountability for prosecutorial and judicial practices: When they pursue crimes against children professionally and aggressively, prosecutors and judges are true heroes. Too often however, prosecutors turn away from child abuse cases they see as challenging, time-consuming and low-profile; and judges become callous and cynical. As public servants and elected officials, prosecutors and judges have a duty to give crimes against our children their utmost priority, expertise and effort.

Strengthen Child Welfare Systems: When a child cries out for help or is thrust into a terrifying and confusing social welfare and criminal justice system, our sacred obligation is to provide that child with well-trained, competent help. PROTECT believes in aggressive recruitment of child protection professionals through student loan forgiveness programs and other incentives (such as those available to corrections officers) and national or state training academies to teach both CPS and law enforcement professionals hard investigative skills.

Guarantee every child victim access to counseling and medical care: Everyday, children who have been hurt and traumatized are forced to suffer further at the hands of government bureaucracies, often being denied the care they desperately need. Every child victim or alleged victim should have immediate and full access to mental health services and medical care, without undue delay, restriction or red tape.

Safeguard Communities

Expand Background Checks: Simple statewide or national criminal background checks are not enough for those working with children. Most predators have victimized many children before they are ever caught. PROTECT encourages the use of Child Protective Services’ records and other registries, and we want to increase requirements on child-serving agencies to conduct diligent background checks.

Lifetime or Long-Term Intensive Supervision: Sex offender registries provide only symbolic or marginal protection to communities, and research shows that treatment programs simply cannot "cure" child sexual offenders. If and when they are released from prison, these offenders should be subject to intensive parole or probation supervision for long periods of time.




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