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Penn State Child Sex Case Reveals Lost Chances to Stop Abuse, Need for State Law to Report Abuse

November 14th, 2011   No Comments   Abuse

Outside observers, child advocates and attorneys following the Penn State University alleged child sexual abuse case of assistant coach Jerry Sandusky already see a pattern unfolding: adults keeping quiet and engaging in cover-up, children affected by a horrible personal injury growing in number, and a community left to wonder how this could happen. From Fort Lauderdale, Florida, to State College to around the nation, “The case has drawn comparisons to the child abuse scandals that rocked the Catholic Church, whose top officials are also accused of covering up child abuse over decades,” notes one paper.

The case also will bring to light the fact that, even though adults knew a child predator was afoot, no Pennsylvania law requires anyone alert the police. Florida has such a law. Sadly, in retrospect, Pennsylvania lawmakers might take this matter up during their next session.

That remains to be seen. In the meantime, the multi-point focus should be on helping the victims find the help they need, bringing all those involved to justice, and implementing safeguards and systems that help protect our most vulnerable citizens.

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