Statewide training will teach how to recognize abuse
FRANKFORT, Ky. (Feb. 9, 2016) — Attorney General Andy Beshear and First Lady Glenna Bevin are partnering to launch a comprehensive statewide training agenda aimed at protecting Kentucky’s children from sexual abuse.
Beshear and Bevin joined child advocates and lawmakers today to highlight the nearly 20 statewide trainings that focus on the ways and how sexual predators try to approach children. Trainings will assist law enforcement, prosecutors, social workers, community advocates, religious affiliates, parents and educators in keeping children safe.
“Each of us can play an important role in preventing child abuse,” said Bevin. “By expanding training in our communities, more people will have the opportunity to learn how to recognize, report and educate others on child abuse. This, in turn, means more Kentucky kids will have the opportunity to grow up in safe, loving homes.”
The Attorney General’s Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation Prevention Board (CSAEP Board) and Office of Victims Advocacy, along with the Department of Criminal Justice Training worked together to create the “What Child Sex Offenders Can Teach You” training. Program partners also include the Department for Behavioral Health Development and Intellectual Disabilities, and the Kentucky Association of Child Advocacy Centers (KACAC).
“In Kentucky, it’s everyone’s legal duty and moral responsibility to protect children from abuse,” Beshear said. “As Attorney General, I’m proud to lead this important effort with the First Lady and all our leaders, advocates, prosecutors and law enforcement agencies to train and communicate ways we can prevent child abuse in every corner of the state. My pledge is that, I will be relentless in better protecting Kentucky’s children.”
Throughout 2016, the training will be coordinated by KACAC and offered at each of Kentucky’s 15 Area Development Districts. Law enforcement, prosecutors, social workers, educators and other professional child advocates are invited to participate. The training curriculum features material from Cory Jewell Jensen, M.S, a nationally recognized child advocate and the co-director of the Center for Behavioral Intervention.
Training focuses on protecting children from molester selection, engagement and seduction and reveals advice that sex offenders have shared with Jensen over her 30-year career.
“Approximately one out of every 214 males in Kentucky is a registered sex offender,” Jensen said “Considering only five to 13 percent of victims even disclose their abuse, we have to do a better job of educating professionals and the public alike. This project is going to put Kentucky on the map in terms of child safety, community policing and crime prevention initiatives.”
In partnership with Jensen, Prevent Child Abuse Kentucky (PCAK), the CSAEP Board, which approved financial support through the Child Victims’ Trust Fund (CVTF), two additional trainings were made possible.
“Protecting our Children: Advice from Child Molesters” trainer program allows two representatives—a member from law enforcement and one local prevention advocate—from each of the 15 ADD’s to receive the training this spring.
“Using Technology to Keep Children Safe from Sexual Abuse and Exploitation” is open to everyone. Those who complete the training will receive an Internet Safety Toolkit, which provides prevention activities for children and families.
“Each day, the Attorney General’s Cyber Crime Unit seizes more than 272 child pornographic images and videos,” said PCAK executive director Jill Seyfred, M.S.W. “As we begin our morning routine, which typically takes about an hour, the unit seizes 11 images and videos. We are pleased to join with Attorney General Beshear and our First Lady to launch this exciting new approach to keeping Kentucky’s kids safe.”
For more information on these trainings and the CVTF, visit the Office of the Attorney General’s website.
To help support victims of child sexual abuse, Kentuckians can visit their county clerk’s office and request a “I Care About Kids” license plate or check the box on your tax return to designate a portion to the CVTF.