Posts Tagged ‘Lynette’s Law’

The rhetoric coming out of the Maryland Psychological Association during the House Bill 33 hearing in front of the House Judiciary Committee was that psychologists that sexually exploited their clients lost their livelihood and by being reported the the National Practitioner Data Bank they couldn’t hop states to practice elsewhere. Both statements are incorrect.

American Live Wire has been working with Lynette’s Law for Maryland to rummage through the debacle that is the state of the board’s disciplinary records, and what’s there is completely contradictory to the statements that were made during HB 33. For one, there have been psychologists that have be reinstated after serving a suspension for their sexual misconduct. You have to really dig through these documents — a number of them are labeled incorrectly and some broken links exist (thankfully, Google has been able to find some).

The other problem lies in the state-hopping. During the HB 33 hearing, the MPA’s lobbyist tried to provide a sense of security that by reporting to charges to the National Practitioner Data Bank (NPDB) there could be no state-hopping. According to a report by Public Citizen, the NPDB contains 50,000 incomplete records. There’s no way to make informed decisions with that type of gaping hole. Also, a bit of searching around can find plenty of state-hoppers taking their sexual exploitation to other locales.

For more, read Lobbyists use National Practitioner Data Bank to provide false sense of security

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I actually spoke about this rape kit situation during a radio interview back in November. Here’s an article that was just published updating this extremely poor situation:

100 Serial Rapists Identified After Rape Kits From Detroit Crime Lab Are Finally Processed: http://www.wxyz.com/news/100-serial-rapists-identified-after-rape-kits-from-detroit-crime-lab-are-finally-processed

China Warns West That Sanctions on Russia Could Spiral Into Chaos: http://scgnews.com/china-warns-west-that-sanctions-on-russia-could-spiral-into-chaos-us-eu-indicate-sanctions-to-begin

Maryland House Bill 33, Lynette’s Law, has passed out of the Judiciary Committee and will get a vote in the house. “One Voice” suicide prevention music video montage:

 

What these girls did to this autistic boy when they sexually assaulted him is pretty disturbing… http://www.cnn.com/2014/03/12/justice/maryland-teens-assault-autistic-boy/index.html?sr=fb031314autisticsexassault1130astory

Maryland House Bill 1193 to Study Strategies for Preventing Sexual Exploitation of Clients by Mental Health Professionals… duplicates the task forces of 1998 and 2008 and should be enforced already. Watch state delegates call for pressuring the Judiciary committee to let HB33 Lynette’s Law out for a vote and pass it, which would do what previous task forces have recommended — criminalize sexual exploitation by mental health professionals.

 

This video is almost like a mini-documentary, highlighting many of the problems with the mental health profession, primarily in Maryland. There is testimony included from a lobbyist of the Maryland Psychological Association, Julia Pitcher Worcester, that is absolutely blown away and shocking revelations of sexual predators that are still working in the field and others who were convicted of sexually abusing minors who got mere months of jail time when they were supposed to get years. Watch Exploitation Nation here:

Lynette’s Law for Maryland has produced another powerful video “Infantilization of Women… a Pro-Rape Mentality,” this one in part a call out the Delegate Jeff Waldstreicher to support House Bill 33. A striking segment of this video is the mirror image comparison of the effects on victims of sex trafficking and the effects on victims of sexual exploitation by mental health professionals. They’re nearly identical, including:

  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Depression
  • Disconnection from feelings and flat affect
  • Anxiety disorders
  • Self-blame
  • Hopelessness, helplessness
  • Nightmares – dreams of rapes, sexual assaults, physical abuse
  • Anger and anger management issues Suicidal ideation and attempts
  • Paranoia
  • Stockholm Syndrome
  • Spiritual disruption
  • Fatalism and rage
  • Dual diagnosis
  • Self-care issues
  • Sleeping issues
  • Disassociative disorders

 

 

Positive news for Erin’s Law: New Mexico has become the 10th state to pass the legislation! Due up next week is Kentucky with Tennessee and Maryland following in March.

American Live Wire caught wind that a psychiatrist blog titled “Shrink Rap” posted in opposition of House Bill 33, Lynette’s Law, which would criminalize the sexual exploitation of patients by mental health professionals (Shrink Rap: Should it be a Crime for a Therapist to Have Sex with a Patient?). There is some interesting debate within the comments section of that blog. Here was American Live Wire’s response, although much more could have been (and very likely will be) said:

First of all, let’s get this strangely perceived notion of consent out of the way. The very nature of the mental health professional-client relationship makes it impossible for consent to occur. It it lopsidedly unequal, the therapist in such a position of power, the person who the patient has trusted with his or her deepest and darkest secrets. Secrets that even spouses don’t know about. The DHMH booklet “Broken Boundaries” explains: “By its nature, the relationship between helping professionals and their clients is unequal. Trusting that professionals have their best interests at heart, clients become vulnerable in the health care setting. … Because they depend on professionals’ trustworthiness, knowledge, and authority, clients tend to not question a professional’s judgment or behavior. This places the professional in a position of power and can make the client susceptible to exploitation.”

Furthermore, “Broken Boundaries” describes a sexually exploitative relationship as, “Sexual contact occurs between a helping professional and client in a relationship that, on the surface, may appear to be mutually consensual, but the patient’s role make it impossible for her or him to give meaningful consent.” Hey, guess what? Sex without consent is… rape! That’s a crime. (http://www.examiner.com/article/sexual-exploitation-not-consent)

Long term effects of sexual contact with a mental health professional are similar to that of rape victims. Kenneth S. Pope, Phd., ABPP, author of Ethics in Psychotherapy and Counseling and considered one of the foremost experts on therapy sex abuse, provides the following statistics of a national study: “The findings suggest that about 90% of patients are harmed by sex with a therapist; 80% are harmed when the sexual involvement begins only after termination of therapy. About 11% required hospitalization; 14% attempted suicide; and 1% committed suicide.” The most common effects of victims that have been involved with therapist-patient sex include ambivalence between escaping the abusive therapist and protecting him or her, cognitive dysfunction, intense emotional eruptions, emptiness and isolation, impaired ability to trust, guilt, increased suicidal risk, role reversal and boundary confusion, sexual confusion (including believing their only worth is to provide sexual gratification to others), and suppressed anger which may lead to self-loathing, self-punishment, and self-destructive behaviors. (http://www.kspope.com/sexiss/sexencyc.php)

So a mental health professional’s sexual exploitation can cause a person to try to murder themselves, among other things that have them hurt for life. How is that not a crime?

American Live Wire now has a Facebook presence! It’s been a long-time coming, but please “Like” us here:
https://www.facebook.com/theamericanlivewire

The chairman of the Judiciary Committee in the Maryland House of Delegates has attempted to kill House Bill 33, Lynette’s Law. Voice your support of this much-needed legislation! Call (410) 841-3488 and let them know you want to keep HB33 alive and to protect patients from sexually exploitative mental health professionals.

Erin’s Law has finally made it to Maryland as House Bill 1344. This is an important task force to study child sex abuse prevention. Congrats, to Erin Merryn. View the bill here:
http://openstates.org/md/bills/2014/HB1344/

“Off the Wire” posts are quick news blurbs in addition to the full blog articles. Keep a lookout for them here on a nearly daily basis.

It’s time to re-ignite the American Live Wire. Nearly five years ago, as part of the Enigma Underground internet radio station this blog was created as a place to sound off politically while the station began to broadcast podcasts of issues of the day. There was a quick splash and both faded out over time while the American Live Wire Twitter account still periodically posted a tweet. It was a faint heartbeat that began beating louder over the past year and a half. Now, American Live Wire is returning.

The Enigma Underground radio station is still shut down at the moment, but we’ll look to broadcast some podcasts and/or radio shows soon. In the meantime, the blog will ramp back up and the tweets will continue to increase. We’re also going to be putting together a Facebook page.

The question is then becomes what political persuasion American Live Wire will now adopt. A look through the archives will instantly reveal a decidedly right wing stance. Sure, the Examiner.com column was “non-partisan,” but non-partisan in Oklahoma is still moderately right. American Live Wire at this time is going to make no particular party distinction — they both have scores of problems and pundits screaming their rhetoric — and is just going to call it like it is, for good or bad. Chalk it up to a few more years of growing wiser and more centrist. There is no party agenda here, just a fair discussion of today’s issues in America.

We’ll also be supporting a number of worthy bi-partisan movements that aim to put forth much-needed policy in the United States. One such example is Lynette’s Law, which you will find in the featured links to the right. The Lynette’s Law legislation is working to protect patients from sexually exploitative mental health professionals and needs your support. This and other movements will be featured on Enigma Underground’s American Live Wire.

Plug us back in and we’re plugging back in!