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Re: Youth exploited.

Posted by Anovagrrl to Sam on August 29, 2003 at 07:46:05

In Reply to: Youth exploited. posted by Sam Ajemian on August 28, 2003 at 20:54:39:

Sam, I'm not clear on what issue you are asking me to speak to. Is this about how to avoid retraumatizing abuse victims? In what context? A lawsuit?

I tend to agree with Rocky that the best approach at this point is on a case-by-case basis. If there is a 2nd gen exmember who can and will identify his/her perpetrator through a complaint filed in a jurisdiction that will hear the case, I would encourage that individual to proceed with all the legal, social and emotional support s/he can marshall.

Getting a class action (so to speak) lawsuit against the Family leadership on behalf of a victim stakeholder group will take a lot of time and money. In the meantime, momentum and legal precidence for such action would be built by individual 2nd gen members successfully prosecuting their perpetrators in U.S., Canadian, and European courts. (Sorry, I know nothing about the legal system in Africa, South America, Asia, or the former Soviet Union.)

If the issue you are asking me to speak to involves how to protect 3rd gen members and humanitarian aid recipients from abuse, then I suggest proceeding with great caution. A public child protective service system can be really top-notch, it can be an abysmal bureaucratic mess without a clue about how to investigate an SA allegation, or it can be somewhere in between.

Local law enforcement authorities may work in close coordination with CPS social workers, or they may (quite frankly) be heavily invested in protecting perpetrators, because (believe it or not) SA perpetrators exist at all levels of the social power structure. Powerful local bosses may have very good reasons to support a Family business in child porn. (I get the distinct feeling this may be occurring in TF's Latin American operations.) Trying to upset that type of an apple cart is likely to be dangerous, even deadly.

This is why I would be hesitant to advocate a media investigation into a high profile NGO like Love's Bridge at this point--although, if they are clean, they should be able to withstand the scruity. If they are legit, media exposure of their connection to TF might force them to make a break. But as others have pointed out, local politicians may be itching for an excuse to go after ALL faith-based NGOs operating in the area.

The issue bears careful deliberation and counsel. It would help to have more information. It seems to me that someone (who knows the individuals involved) should try communicating directly with the leadership of Love's Bridge and ask them about their position on TF's sex doctrines with regard to their clients.