Sunday, April 22, 2012

National Task Force on Children Exposed to Violence

I was browsing Google for news on "violence" today (something I have not done in quite some time) and came across this post from Robert Listenbee Jr., of the Defender Association of Philadphia. Mr. Listenbee writes about the ever-present issue of violence in our inner cities and the impact that violence has on children.

Rather than just being another in an endless stream of articles on how violent our society is, Mr. Listenbee offers some hope in a new program from the U.S. Attorney General - the National Task Force on Children Exposed to Violence (a.k.a., "The Defending Childhood Task Force"). Fans of the NY Yankees (a.k.a., "The Best Team Money Can Buy") will be pleased to hear that Joe Torre is involved in this.

As Mr. Listenbee writes:
Not only are we highlighting the scope of the problem, more important, we are highlighting solutions.
The DCTF sounds a lot like what the Youth PROMISE act is championing - bring together representatives from all segments of the communities that are impacted by violence and help them identify and implement solutions to their unique problems.
We need the faith community, businesses and all levels of government to be a part of the solution.
As of now, the DCTF is still just in the analysis-and-report phase of their charter. They owe the Attorney General a report by the end of 2012 with recommendations about what communities can do to address the impact of violence on children. If you're in Detroit on April 23-24, you may want to check out the hearing to see how this might play out.

What do you know about this initiative?

(Note: The DOJ web site lists 58 agencies, of which "Defending Childhood" looks like it's supposed to be one. However, the site addresses seem to be a little screwed up. The Detroit hearing link works fine, but the other DCTF links are non-responsive as of this writing. I hope this is a sign of how new this program is more than an indication of the relative importance of this agency in he midst of everything else the DOJ is responsible for.)