Christian Assemblies International: Former members detail abuse, Official campus statistics for sexual violence mislead
July 30, 2014 Comments Off on Christian Assemblies International: Former members detail abuse, Official campus statistics for sexual violence mislead
Christian Assemblies International: Former members detail abuse handed out by CAI leader Scott Williams ABC By Caro Meldrum-Hanna July 29, 2014
A four-year investigation by the ABC has uncovered shocking claims of abuse and torment in relation to NSW-based registered charity and religious group Christian Assemblies International (CAI).
Four Corners has revealed that self-styled religious guru Pastor Scott Williams was using his warped brand of evangelical Pentecostalism to run a clandestine homosexual sex ring while allegedly misusing vast amounts of member donations for personal use.
Courageous former members broke their silence and told of their torment living inside the group, which they said is not a Christian church but a horrendous cult run by one man.
The ex-members have remained in the shadows until now out of fear and shame. They detailed shocking acts of abuse ranging from spiritual abuse, financial abuse, verbal and physical abuse, and the sexual abuse of adult men.
They said bizarre sexual rituals were carried out in secret by Williams, who described himself as “The Anointed One” with the Lord’s authorisation to sidestep biblical commands against homosexuality and sexually train his male members into submission and obedience….
Former members say they were recruited by Williams as teenagers and young adults, with many still at school. They say they were brainwashed into believing Williams was The Anointed One, filled with the Holy Spirit and gifted with the divine power of healing…..
Katja’s husband, Steve, says women were treated as less than men.
“Women were second-rate citizens,” he said. “They were there to have children and stand in the kitchen and make food.”
Using biblical scripture, Williams also preached that children were born evil and that the evil had to beaten out of them with an iron rod.
Four Corners spoke to many children who were born into the cult who are now adults. They detailed disturbing policies of punishment, including children being publically beaten for making any noise during a Sunday sermon or for moving off a mat laid out at the front of the Assembly….
Official campus statistics for sexual violence mislead
A school with a lower rate may just be better at discouraging students from reporting assault
July 14, 2014 by Jennifer J. Freyd
Last month, The Washington Post released a compilation of reported rates of campus sexual assault nationwide. Such reports, which colleges and universities are required to release each year, are generally thought to be useful to the public. Parents of college-bound high school students who read that School A has a higher rate of reported sexual violence than School B can make more informed decisions about where their children will be safest. And they might very reasonably think that School A is a more dangerous school. However, the higher rate of reported sexual violence at School A likely indicates the opposite: that it is actually safer than School B. It means that School A is making it possible for — even encouraging — students to report sexual violence.
As a social scientist researching campus sexual violence, I know that even the highest rates of official reported victimization on campuses are substantially lower than what social science data suggest are the real rates of sexual assault. The best national estimate is that approximately 1 in 5 women experience sexual violence in college. But the reported rates are nothing like this, even at those colleges with the highest rates.
Why? Victims of abuse are often reticent about making official reports because they fear the consequences, including being stigmatized or not being believed. This tendency to remain silent is then amplified by institutional barriers to reporting. Colleges and universities have a perverse incentive to discourage sexually victimized students from reporting assault, due to the reputational hit colleges experience if their reported rates of violence are higher than those of their competitors. It’s a profoundly dangerous status quo, because encouraging reporting is one of the key ways colleges can make campuses safer.
Part of the challenge of tackling campus sexual assault is that sexual abuse typically starts in adolescence, prior to the beginning of college. Perpetrators have often been victimized themselves. Many college victims also have a prior history of abuse. These are important factors that my laboratory has studied for years. Ultimately we must address the underlying society-wide problem of child sexual abuse that contributes to college sexual violence. But in the meantime, college campuses offer a remarkable intervention point for sexual assault: They have resources. They are limited in number (thousands of institutions of higher education versus millions of families, for instance). They influence young people on the cusp of adult responsibility.
But only when such violence is reported can victims access services and colleges hold perpetrators accountable. For most colleges and universities, however, discouraging reporting appears to remain the norm. Colleges can make it difficult to determine how to report; they can also make life harder for students who do report by shaming, invalidating and even punishing them. This is why the reported rates likely tell us more about the campus climate than about underlying rates of sexual violence.
When schools discourage reporting, they collude with many societal forces to cover up sexual violence. Sexual violence thrives on secrecy; if students do not feel they can safely report, the assaults will continue unchecked….
Everything you missed from Matthew Sandusky’s interview with Oprah Winfrey, UConn to pay $1.3M in sex assault handling lawsuit, Online child abuse reports surge, says US watchdog
July 19, 2014 Comments Off on Everything you missed from Matthew Sandusky’s interview with Oprah Winfrey, UConn to pay $1.3M in sex assault handling lawsuit, Online child abuse reports surge, says US watchdog
Everything you missed from Matthew Sandusky’s interview with Oprah Winfrey By Soraya Nadia McDonald July 18, 2014
….In an interview aired Thursday night on “Oprah Prime” on Winfrey’s OWN network, Matthew told Winfrey he felt it would have been better for his children and wife if he’d kept everything to himself instead of coming forward. Matthew initially offered grand jury testimony that Sandusky was not a child molester, but recanted during trial. After he told police he had also been abused, Matthew said his family, not just him, became the target of vicious character attacks.
“I can handle it,” Matthew said, even though the abuse drove him to attempt suicide shortly after he moved in with the Sanduskys when he was 16. “I can handle people attacking me. I handled the abuse. I can take it. My wife is an innocent. My children — they’re innocent. For people to attack them — yes, absolutely, the simpler answer would have been for me to keep it, to deal with it on my own.”
Matthew said he came forward about the abuse because he didn’t want to be a “coward.” When he heard the testimony of victim No. 4 during Sandusky’s criminal trial, Matthew said he was astonished at how similar the details were…..
More than 30 boys eventually came forward to say Sandusky molested them. To avoid further litigation, Penn State agreed to a $60 million settlement with 26 victims, including Matthew, and the university disbursed payments of varying sizes. Matthew said he had no knowledge of the settlement when he came forward.
Matthew met Jerry and his wife, Dottie Sandusky, when he was seven years old through Sandusky’s Second Mile charity camp. According to The Washington Post’s Joel Achenbach:
Prosecutors say that the Second Mile became a tool for harvesting children for abuse. Sandusky, they said, was a classic predatory pedophile, a man who befriended the most vulnerable boys, the ones needing a father figure, who became appreciative that someone would bring them to football games and make them feel special.
Matthew told Winfrey how he resigned himself to being molested almost as a tradeoff for being around an otherwise stable and loving family. He came from a broken home, he said, where there was physical abuse and even running water wasn’t something that could be taken for granted. He often lived with his grandparents….
Matthew began to act out when he was a young teenager. He tried to cut Sandusky out of his life altogether, but Matthew told Winfrey the coach would come to his biological mother’s home unannounced. He would pull Matthew out of school. There was no escaping him, and Matthew became a truant. He started doing drugs and stealing, and was eventually arrested.
Matthew had a choice: Move in with the Sanduskys, or go to juvenile detention.
The Sanduskys moved him into their home with five other children, all adopted. Matthew so dreaded Sandusky’s nighttime visits he tried to kill himself. He said after that, the sexual abuse largely stopped. The family legally adopted him when he was 18 and pressured him to take the family name so he would be privy to a tuition break thanks to Sandusky’s employment at Penn State….
UConn to pay $1.3M in sex assault handling lawsuit
Jul 18, 2014 By PAT EATON-ROBB Associated Press
STORRS, Conn. (AP) – The University of Connecticut will pay $1.3 million to settle a lawsuit by five women who alleged the school did not take seriously their claims of sexual assaults on campus.
The bulk of the settlement, $900,000, will go to Silvana Moccia, a former UConn ice hockey player who alleged she was kicked off the team after reporting she had been raped by a male hockey player in August 2011.
The other four women will receive payments ranging from $25,000 to $125,000.
University officials adamantly denied that they have been indifferent to reports of assaults and did not admit any wrongdoing in the settlement. They said the legal fight would be costly and bad for UConn’s image.
Online child abuse reports surge, says US watchdog
By Dave Lee Technology reporter, BBC News 17 July 2014
There has been a dramatic rise in reports of child abuse images posted to commonly used parts of the internet, according to a US watchdog.
They include photos posted to publicly-accessible parts of social networks.
The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children received a record number of reports in the first week of July, four times the weekly average.
It comes in a week UK authorities arrested 660 people in connection with online child abuse.
That investigation was believed to have been targeted at those using the so-called “dark net” – parts of the internet that are hidden and can be hard to access without special software.
But the NCMEC stressed there was still a significant and growing challenge for law enforcement agencies to deal with material on the open internet as well as the harder-to-reach areas….
March 16, 2014 Comments Off on The Problem of Campus Sexual Assault
The Problem of Campus Sexual Assault
March 14, 2014 by Alison Kahler
“When young women get to college, nearly 20% of them will be victims of attempted or actual sexual assault, as will about 6% of undergraduate men.”
“the vast majority of (campus) rapes are committed by serial, violent predators”
Recently, a friend and fellow University of Chicago alumna showed me an open letter to university president Robert Zimmer demanding that the university reevaluate its policy regarding campus sexual assaults. After reporting an assault by her then-partner and being illegally offered a mediation session by Dean of Students Susan Art, current fourth-year student Olivia Ortiz filed a complaint with the United States Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights (OCR), prompting a larger investigation of the university for possible violations of Title IX. In response, a coalition of alumni wrote and circulated the letter in question. I gladly added my name.
Though I am heartbroken to read about my beloved alma mater’s betrayal of sexual assault victims, I am not surprised. Campus sexual assaults are chillingly common, according to the Department of Education’s 2011 Dear Colleague Letter: Sexual Violence Background, Summary, and Fast Facts (found on Marsh Law Firm’s roundup of Title IX resources):
When young women get to college, nearly 20% of them will be victims of attempted or actual sexual assault, as will about 6% of undergraduate men.
And yet—despite this reminder of the prevalence of this problem and their responsibilities—when confronted with an incident, colleges all over the country exhibit a pattern of dismissing and covering up sexual assaults….
perpetrators know they can get away with their largely under-reported crimes, and they do so often; according to a report by psychologist David Lisak:
[College rapists] tend to be serial offenders, and most of them commit a variety of different interpersonal offenses. They are accurately and appropriately labeled as predators.
This picture conflicts sharply with the widely-held view that rapes committed on university campuses are typically the result of a basically “decent” young man who, were it not for too much alcohol and too little communication, would never do such a thing. While some campus rapes do fit this more benign view, the evidence points to a far less benign reality, in which the vast majority of rapes are committed by serial, violent predators….