Great things are happening at the CFFP!

Great things are happening at the CFFP!

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And we can’t wait to tell you about them! Starting with…

OUR FIRST GRANT! We are excited to report that the generous members of Foundation Beyond Belief have donated a combined total of $10,265 to the CFFP. We were one of five beneficiary organization chosen for the “Challenge the Gap” category, which includes groups that work with faith communities. All funds will go directly to developing and implementing our educational programs. We are so grateful for this gift!

GET READY FOR CFFP CONFERENCE 2014! This year’s conference will again present some of the country’s most informed and prestigious speakers who can help us better understand how to protect children from maltreatment in faith communities. Our two keynote speakers are Boz Tchividjian, JD, and Lisa Fontes, PhDBoz is the founder of the investigative organization, Godly Response to Abuse in the Christian Environment (GRACE). He is also the grandson of Dr. Billy Graham and a professor at Liberty University School of Law. Lisa has dedicated two decades to making the mental health, social service, and criminal justice systems more responsive to culturally diverse communities and is the author of Child Abuse and Culture: Working with Diverse Families. Read More »

Couple convicted of child abuse

This article was originally published in the Wisconsin State Journal.

A couple who spanked their young children on their bare bottoms with wooden dowels in keeping with the teachings of the church they belonged to were convicted Friday night of child abuse, the last of eight people connected to the church charged with abuse.

Matthew Caminiti, 29, was convicted of four of the five counts of child abuse he faced, while his wife, Alina Caminiti, 27, of Black Earth, was convicted of all three counts she faced after a weeklong jury trial in Dane County Circuit Court. Read more

 

Proving Richard Dawkins Wrong

This blog post was originally published via Religious Child Maltreatment

I am a fan of Richard Dawkins. I admire him as a biologist, as a straight-talking atheist, and as an advocate for victims of religious child maltreatment. On June 1 of this year, I had the honor to be introduced by him at the American Humanist Association conference in San Diego where I spoke on a panel that he moderated on the subject of religious fundamentalism and child abuse. Dr. Dawkins praised my book, Breaking Their Will, and stressed how important it is that we recognize that religious belief can be a risk factor in cases of abuse and neglectI applaud Dr. Dawkins for personally donating £10,000 toward a fund to build a legal case to prosecute Pope Benedict XVI for his part in the Catholic church covering up cases of child sexual abuse committed by priests.

But I have to call him on a comment he made about child abuse. Actually, it was a comment he made about how we should view the actions of abusers who perpetrated their actions a few generations ago. In making his comment, Dr. Dawkins was not simply incorrect, he was terribly wrong, as in irresponsible. That is, I feel his statement could have a deleterious affect on victims of religious child maltreatment now and for years to come. Read more

CFFP Conference 2013: A first of its kind event!

CFFP Conference 2013: A first of its kind event!

wideshot of conferenceOur November 8th conference was an amazing opportunity. We were joined by an audience that consisted of people who work in various fields from religious education to social work to law enforcement. We came together to hear about religious and cultural child maltreatment and what can be done to better protect children from abuse and neglect enabled by ideology and ignorance. The speakers represented a who’s-who of experts who have devoted their lives to these important issues. We heard some late-breaking news about a problematic community in Idaho, and the whole event was watched remotely by an audience who tuned in to a live feed.

Want to watch videos from the conference? Click here.

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More than she could bear

More than she could bear

This blog post was originally published via Religious Child Maltreatment

By now you’ve probably heard about the case of Nina Koistinen. She’s the 36-year-old mother from Phoenix who has been charged with first-degree murder, after she confessed to suffocating her newborn baby, Maya. Koistinen reportedly told authorities that she killed Maya six days after giving birth to her, because she “had too many kids already” and was jealous of the attention her husband was giving the baby.

It was her husband, Bradley Koistinen, who found the lifeless infant and alerted authorities. At his wife’s initial court appearance, he explained that his wife was suffering from bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and depression. “We have tried for years and years to manage it,” he said. He also noted that his wife of fifteen years “has been the greatest mother” who “has never hurt any of our kids.” Read more