Friday, April 6, 2012

"New Rules for Juveniles" -- Each new Crisis Benefits a Pre-Planned Agenda

I hope to keep this post short, after picking up on an article inbetween the verbal sparring and put-downs over at Scranton PT.

The news article highlights a group people should know about:
Juvenile Law Center, "Advancing the rights and well-being of children in jeopardy."

I doubt any crooks (should such exist) running some of the programs parents are protesting have much to fear if that's all they do -- fight each other, and complain about the individuals.  Right now, the FBI can't be seen for dust in the matter (that I'm aware of) and the mainstream media is taking the mainstream/expert point of view.

However,  obviously some fear exists because of the "courthouse roundup" behavior by Judge Margaret Moyle in February 2012, a clear attempt to intimidate protesting locals and make sure they don't bond with any straggling NEW customers about to sign onto the automatic GAL system.

As an outsider, I grab onto clues that for some reason, others are simply not picking up on.  Or at least biting into.

A MAJOR one came from a simple pdf submitted by one of (over 200) comments on the Times-Tribune article about the federal lawsuit.  That's how I found out that the organization "NACC" (National Association of Counsel for Children) -- which I already knew (but not before participating on this forum) was hooked up with AFCC, who basically runs the courts with some help from their friends.  NACC/AFCC was clear enough connection (they'd conferenced together and have common membership right within Lackawanna County.  The GAL people are upset about (when, instead they should be more upset about the system itself) is an NACC member.

So, "Scranton Prof" mentioned a group called "CAI" (Children's Advocate Institute) which is San Diego based, and connected with First Star (Washington D.C. based) and (per the author of has apparently some ties into some of the "Justice for Children" (Eileen King et. al) personnel that "Mothers of Lost Children" and "Centers for Judicial Excellence" have some dealing with.  Who (some of the above) helped take the Linda Marie Sacks case (Florida) up to Superior Court USA where it was rebuffed.  Note:  with great fanfare and not a single mention of the AFCC's ties to supervised visitation racket, i.e.,  reporting on what I report on here -- these nonprofits.

It took a little while -- not exceeding much time -- to figure out approximately where this CAI group was coming in.  They are concerned about poor abused children and believe that assigning more counsel to children in almost any kind of hearing (NOT just dependency hearings for abused kids) will help the children.  This is pretty much what NACC says.

So at one end, the declaration is, "more of us" = "better for kids" and at the other (street level citizens) end -- the declaration is -- this individual professional (Danielle M. Ross) is, er, ah -- extorting us, insisting in payments in cash, operating out of public property illegally, micro-managing parents and kids possibly overbilling, and in general (with judicial support and blessing) terrorizing the local territory.  

Ms. Ross can barely write straight and appears to be dealing with powerpoint cartoons in her reasoning process (or is it, "repetition" process) -- which is another post.  Today we see a beautiful news article (MSM) which -- not knowing any of the above -- simply reports that the standard view -- if there'd been more LAWYERS representing the children, they wouldn't have become subject to a RICO plan, and led away in handcuffs as part of a revolving door profit scheme, with the judge rubber-stamping violations of their rights.

Let's run that by again:  the concept is, ADD an attorney and the situation will get BETTER??   ????    ????????  ?????

Yep.  (I added this link to my links under "News2012")

Following 'kids for cash' scandal, Pennsylvania courts institute new rules for juveniles
March 3, 2012 | By Joel Rose | NPR

More than 2,000 young people in Pennsylvania are trying to put one of the nation's worst juvenile justice scandals behind them. It's been a year since a former judge was convicted in the so-called "kids for cash" scandal.
New rules intended to protect the rights of children took effect this week, but questions about Pennsylvania's juvenile justice system remain.

Former Judge Mark Ciavarella leaves the federal courthouse in Scranton, Pa., in 2009. Ciavarella was convicted last year of racketeering and conspiracy for taking nearly a million dollars from the developer of two for-profit prisons.
Here's how the article goes:  Anecdote -- personal account:

Laurene Transue and her daughter Hillary appeared before Ciavarella in 2007, after Hillary created a satirical MySpace page making fun of her high school principal. Transue had spent years working for social service agencies in other counties, so she thought she knew how the case would go.
She figured Hillary — who was then a sophomore — would apologize and get a stern lecture and maybe community service. She was wrong.
"We weren't in there 60 seconds," Transue says. "The gavel came down, they took her away, handcuffed her and that was that."
Without realizing it, Transue had waived her daughter's right to counsel and Hillary was sentenced to three months of detention.
"When they took Hillary away, they had to help me out of the room," she says. "I just could not reconcile what had just happened with what I knew should have happened. It didn't make sense to me — the way the judge spoke, his demeanor in the courtroom — I was shocked."
The experience of the Transue family was typical.

What this alone tells us:  theses courtrooms were a "gulag." No one thinks that this could happen in America.  Think again!  Greed is ugly .....

About half the defendants who appeared before Judge Ciavarella waived their right to a lawyer and kids were routinely led out of his courtroom in shackles for minor offenses. They were 10 times as likely to receive out-of-home placement as kids in other Pennsylvania counties, and it went on like this for seven years.

Clearly it's a system.  But I don't care if it was statistically out of proportion -- if it happened five times that was five wrongs.  It's probably happening in other Pennsylvania counties, and in other states -- because the same profit motive has been around, forever, almost.  How do you think we became the world's largest jailor -- by accident?  By raising too many criminals in the USA?

So, they are going to remove shackles, and a child's (juvenile's parent's?) right to waive counsel -- which is a serious issue.  IS that really the solution?

This was a huge black eye," says Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justice Ron Castille. "That barely describes the enormity of what was going on up there. Because of that we made a lot of changes in juvenile rules."
The black eye wasn't that it was happening, but that the public found out.

The changes are supposed to prevent another "kids for cash" scandal from happening. For one thing, the use of shackles is now strongly discouraged.  Starting this month, defendants in juvenile court will not be allowed to waive their right to counsel, except in rare cases.

The problem occurred from lack of oversight into the financial money trail between the judges and those who owned the institution where kids were being sent.  Not from lack of counsel or bad rules.  Changing the rules (when the courtroom holds crooks!) is sort of like changing the color of the wallpaper when the issue is termites.

More to the point -- are these counsel actually independent -- at all -- from the judges they stand in front of?  

I'll make a guess.  If the matter deals with anyone under 21 (and control of them -- and their parent/s through the youth or child) . . . . No.  But I'm jumping ahead.  NEXT IN ARTICLE they need to quote someone from the Juvenile Law Center about the topic.  Obviously, when in doubt, interview one parent (for personal interest) and get the anecdote.  Then reassure the public (the crooked judges were caught and punished), then quote someone who already has an agenda, an expert of some sort, who will make the plug for more public funds to fix the problem.

That's what this is about:

 That's a big step forward, says Marsha Levick at the Juvenile Law Center in Philadelphia, which helped bring the Ciavarella case to light.*** But Levick says there's another problem: Pennsylvania is one of just a handful of states that do not provide any money to counties to defend those who can't afford a lawyer.

** I took a look at the Board of Directors of this Juvenile Law Center, and what memberships they held -- which anyone concerned about reform should take a few minutes to do.  And repeat til understanding is ignited..

If you want to understand a group, you really SHOULD look at its board of directors.  This one has some SERIOUS firepower, plus connections to the business community, social services, administration, HHS for sure, and places like:  Georgetown, Temple, Harvard, UCBerkeley, University of Chicago, and for some reason, two executives with background from Comcast and another a hotshot with an Electrical corporation (Eaton).

Anne Rosewater, President
The board represent corporate and high-class law academia, plus connections to HHS and Social Services.   The board sets the vision, and the vision is to establish legal advocacy for juveniles as a profession, pretty much (it seems).  A related organization is focusing on establishing legal advocacy for children as a profession (NACC).

Look at this.  More about the scope of this on my other blogs -- but just read them off.   This is someone used to running things, and dealing with large budgets, grants, and as it says planning and policy development.
Ann Rosewater provides consultation services to foundations, universities, not-for-profit and governmental organizations in strategic planning and policy development. Among her recent clients are the Georgia State University Health Policy Center and School of Social Work, the Morehouse School of Medicine, the Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation, MDC, Healthcare Georgia Foundation, the Southeastern Council of Foundations, the Center for the Study of Social Policy, the Family Violence Prevention Fund (for the California Endowment, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Rosenberg Foundation), Team Up for Youth, Voices for Georgia’s Children and the California Statewide Leadership Group on Domestic Violence and Child Well-being.** She has also consulted for the Annie E. Casey, Ford and Rockefeller Foundations, Pew Charitable Trusts, W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Edna McConnell Clark Foundation, David and Lucille Packard Foundation, Moriah Fund, Art Reach Foundation and the Harvard School of Public Health. 
the FVPF is a red flag. .....
(**Sounds great on paper -- bullshit in practice. I'm from that state.)

In short, The Juvenile Law Center is subscribing, pretty much, to the "Models for Change" (which is a project with serious funding from a tax-exempt foundation (John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur) and is set up so that the people running it are demonstrating at the STATEWIDE level.  In other words, Pennsylvania -- while this Kids 4 Cash scandal was going on, and wasting children's youth -- was a demonstration state.    They have their initiatives, which is to set up thie "MODEL' as the model without necessarily running it by the public, as to Juvenile Justice.   Whether their ideas are good or not so good is not the point.  In getting them passed (and focusing on getting them passed as fast as possible based on declared need coupled with proposed solution) -- they are undermining the process set up in the US by which change in the legal system is to happen -- and that is through one's elected legislators -- not outside the state corporate/foundation wealth with a pre-fab agenda.

The fact is, the Juvenile Law Center DID spearhead the prosecution of Kids for Cash (as I understand it) -- but they didn't even identify it til a PARENT (not an expert) brought it to their attention, or possibly several parents.  Why?  Because what this group does is working on the national agenda, as far as I can see.

Not saying that these individuals are not experts in their field, or reformers.  But what we, as normal, unincorporated human beings, need to understand is exactly who we are dealing with in institutions (of ALL kinds) that affect our lives and for which -- often -- we pay in the form of taxes.

Marsha Levick (from the web) -- Adjunct Professor of law, background in NOW Legal Defense Fund, etc.

Penn Law

MARSHA LEVICK Adjunct Professor of Law
Email: mlevick@law.upenn.eduEXPERTISE
  • Public Interest
Marsha Levick co-founded the Juvenile Law Center (JLC) in 1975. Between 1975 and 1982, Levick served as JLC's first executive Director. Levick represented many individual children in delinquency proceedings as well as litigated challenges to conditions of confinement in juvenile institutions and standards for pre-trial detention throughout Pennsylvania. In 1982, Levick left JLC to become the Legal Director of the NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund in New York City. From 1986 - 1988, Levick served as Executive Director of NOW LDEF. In 1995, Levick returned to JLC as a senior staff attorney, concentrating on litigation to enforce and advance children's rights in the juvenile justice and child welfare systems. Her recent legal work includes suing the Pennsylvania Department of Education to enforce special and basic education rights for school-aged inmates in Pennsylvania's county prisons and jails. In October of 1999, Levick was named legal director of JLC.

Here is the victory -- and it is a victory -- posted on the MODELS FOR CHANGE website:

Models for Change: Systems Reform in Juvenile Justice

"Advancing effective, fair and developmentally sound juvenile justice policies and procedures"

The New Faces Of Leadership (The Forward 50: Marsha Levick)

Dec 4, 2009, Jane Eisner, The Jewish Daily Forward
It has since been called the most serious incident of judicial corruption in the nation’s history. But when Marsha Levick, 58, and her colleagues from the Juvenile Law Center in Philadelphia first began probing the harsh sentences imposed on young people after lightning-fast hearings in the courtrooms of Pennsylvania’s Luzerne County, they had no idea what they would uncover. They knew only that children were being sent away, sometimes in shackles, for first-time crimes as minor as pushing a classmate into a school locker. Levick and other JLC lawyers eventually built a comprehensive case, alleging that for years, Judges Mark A. Ciavarella, Jr. and Michael T. Conahan were sending the youngsters, who often had no legal representation, to private jails whose owner had paid the pair a total of $2.6 million in bribes. The JLC — founded in 1975 by Levick, executive director Robert Schwartz, and two other Temple Law School classmates — pursued justice for the juveniles involved, fighting against the vast political bureaucracy of Pennsylvania’s legal system, and finally won. Ciavarella and Conahan are awaiting trial on a 48-count racketeering indictment. Meanwhile, on October 30, the state’s Supreme Court dismissed thousands of juvenile convictions, saying that none of the young offenders had received a fair hearing.

Models for change is something to get informed about.  They have an agenda, and if you're in these states, it's in operation, or coming soon, most likely:

States for Change
Strategic states selected for their leadership and commitment to change, geographic diversity, differing needs and opportunities, and likelihood to influence reforms in other locations.
Back at the Juvenile Law Center "Home" (scroll to the bottom) they note have hosted conferences for larger groups such as the NACC. National Association of Counsel for Children.


This is a 5-year strategic plan, and not the first:

About the NACC
Founded in 1977, the National Association of Counsel for Children is a 501(c)(3) non‐profit child advocacy and professional membership organization dedicated to enhancing the well being of America’s children and families. The NACC is located in The Kempe Center on the campus of Children’s Hospital Colorado.
Its Board of Directors approves the strategic plans of this nonprofit. Staff's duties are to carry them out.  This board is listed here as:

Strategic Plan Process
This is the NACC’s fourth strategic plan. The first plan ran from 1995 to 2000, the second from 2000 to 2005, the third from 2005 to 2011. This plan will take effect in September 2011 and terminate in December 2016. This plan was developed collaboratively with the Board and staff.
How nice.  What mechanism was there for public input -- in this very much of a public issue?
The Board began to discuss the plan at its annual meeting in 2010 and had a brainstorming session with the staff at its midyear meeting in 2011. Following the midyear meeting, the Executive Committee worked with the staff on an initial draft that was distributed and discussed via email prior to its final approval in August 2011.
The Board approves the goals and objectives. It is the staff’s responsibility to develop the tasks, assignments and timetables. Objectives are to be specific, measurable, ambitious but obtainable and time bound.
By 2011 or shortly thereafter, the FBI raided a Pennsylvania courthouse based on allegations of financial fraud (overbilling) and other possible illegal activity (unless there are other reasons an FBI would raid and office and waltz off with boxes of evidence, forcing the local court administrator to stand outside the door while they do this....  

I don't know what an "adopted board of directors" is (below).  However, this nonprofit is based in Colorado, and has board embers from at least San Diego (Richard C. Fellmeth) and San Francisco (Christopher Wu, who sits on multiple responsibilities at the California Judicial Council's AOC.  In other words, these are at least some of them public employees forming a private nonprofit with an inter-state agenda.....

Concerned citizens should look up and report on every single one of them. I have looked up some and don't feel like doing this entirely by myself -- not even being a PA resident.....
Adopted NACC Board of Directors, August 24, 2011
Candace Barr John Ciccolella Robert Fellmeth Gerard Glynn Leslie Starr Heimov H.D. Kirkpatrick
Stephanie Ledesma Jane Okrasinski Erik Pitchal Henry J. Plum Robert Redfearn Janet Sherwood
Tamara Steckler John Stuemky Sonia Velasquez Linda Weinerman Christopher Wu

This NACC (basically) is the very group that a pending federal lawsuit in Middle District, Pennsylvania (Stefanov case) is about (it's not mentioned in the lawsuit, however the policies it is protesting come pretty much wholesale from NACC published policy), which protests the "automatic assignment of GAL" practice -- started by a judge, not by popular request and not by legislative review with, from what I can see, citizen comment.  Look at NACC for their Pennsylvania Attorneys, and one search comes up with only three, the first of which is Danielle M. Ross!!

Member Search Results (Pennsylvania

Here is the agenda of the NACC acc. to its 2012-2017 strategic plan (link, above.  Number one, they want to promoted Children's Law as a Speciality.  this is the primary definition of their agenda (being Goal#1, right?)

I. Goal: Promote Children’s Law as a legal specialty. . .
Next, they want to be the ones controlling this field, their training.  This "education/training/technical assistance and collaboration" phrase is THROUGHout federal grantee language (whether DV, Fatherhood, or this field.  You name something that a group like this wishes to improve -- and they are want to be at the head of the EDUCATE-TRAIN-TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE fountain.  This control (i.e., FILTERS & FRAMES) how the information, resources, or advocacy comes out.  It could be good, or less than good, it could be the best, or it could be close to the worst.  The point is -- to get in charge of educating, raining, and technically assisting for ANY field one wishes to develop is just about to control the field.

And I have a problem with that, for one Ms. Ross (some of whose work I've seen-- she sounds barely literate at times) is a member.  Also the SF Representative Christopher Wu is an issue for me -- California's Judicial Council is all over the news, in-fighting with an Alliance of Judges struggling for control of the money; there have been multiple leadership step-downs, whistleblower firings (for reporting over-billing!) and more problems that it's possible to either correct or even report thoroughly at this time.  i  blogged some at two other blogs, and also reports on it consistently.

NACC goals:

II. Goal: Improve the advocacy for children and families through education, training, technical assistance and collaboration
A. Objective: Maximize the effectiveness, profitability and all aspects of the Conference
B. Objective: Promote and conduct Red Book Training as Certification Exam Preparation and Child Welfare Law Overview.
C. Objective: Conduct training programs in addition to the Conference and Red Book trainings
D. Objective: Maintain the multi‐disciplinary aspects of training
E. Objective: Participate in assessments and evaluations on quality of advocacy for children and families
F. Objective: Identify and develop evidence based best practices in advocacy on behalf of children and families
G. H. I. J.
Objective: Deliver trainings through modern technologies 
Objective: Maintain and enhance the resource center 
Objective: Continue youth participation in trainings 
Objective: Collaborate with other organizations to advance the NACC Mission
Collaborate in another context could be, conspire.  Among the other organizations are:  AFCC, CAI & First Star out of Washington, D.C., the last two of which I've been looking into since I heard about them -- very recently.

Now, this third goal -- the juicy center -- we (all) should have a serious issue with.  It's CONTRARY to the purposes of having a Constitution -- federal, or state -- which is to ensure "We, the People" are a force sufficient to counter tyranny in government, regardless of our age:

III. Goal: Promote policy advocacy as a way to advance the rights and interest of children and families


A. Objective: Participate in amicus briefs and litigation support activities

B. Objective: Expand the organization’s participation in national policy work 

C. Objective: Participate in local and state policy advocacy


The words "children and families" at this point in time should strike a chill down the spine of any parents in intact families, and/or any two parents (or more, if the shoe fits, wear it) engaging the family court system.
IV. Goal: Enhance NACC’s effectiveness through a large, stable and multidisciplinary membershipA. Objective: Increase membership to a minimum 2500 members in three years and 3000 in five yearsB. C. D.Objective: Maintain an affiliate program Objective: Improve marketing of the organization Objective: Improve the communications with the members

The word "multi-disciplinary" in this context means, judges, attorneys, social workers, and mental/behavioral health specialists.  At a minimum.  By now I think the point should be clear -- this is a swat team for a specific agenda of getting as many "attorneys for children" in on kids' lives in practically any situation of dispute.

They are on the "New Frontier" (see conference brochure):

Association of Family and Conciliation Courts Conference Image

Workshop contents can then be marketed (CD, MP3, DVD), and include topics such as how to establish a parenting coordination program (Conference at a glance link.  NOTE:  Lacakwanna also has a thread protesting a certain parenting coordinator in the area, and her receipts (for invoices to the county) were found -- and included presentation at an NACC conference in 2009 -- Anne Marie Termini.  I hit parenting coordination pretty hard also (appropriately so) at (go look for it/search)

And these groups want the counties to pay for it.  That's the AFCC mindset and always has been.  

Look at the AFCC logo (i was just noticing) -- and see that there are three symbols (each representing a person).  I believe the two smaller ones represent the parents, and the bigger one in the middle represents the "expert" mediating between them.  this is WHO the AFCC wishes to be -- for a good pay scale, too.....

Here's another logo on its site about move-aways.  What is this logo trying to say? (note genders and which one is taking the one child only, who is a boy)  Color green typically can invoke jealousy.  The color theme of the site is light blue -- but this is green.

Product ImageProduct Image  (Parenting Coordination link from AFCC):

Parenting Coordination: WHAT?
Parenting coordination is an alternative dispute resolution process combining assessment, education, case management, conflict resolution and, sometimes, decision-making functions.  A Parenting coordinator (PC) is typically appointed by a court order or private consent agreement to help parents implement, modify and comply with the parenting plan.  PCs assist parents {???allegedly!}}} by providing: (1) education about co-parenting and parental communication; (2) the psychological and developmental needs of the children; (3) strategies to manage conflict and reduce the negative effects on children; and (4) effective post-separation parenting.  To further assist parents and children, PCs facilitate referrals to community providers when necessary and collaborate with other professionals who may already be involved with the family.
Yeah -- well, Conahan, Ciavarella and Mericle were also involved in referrals to "community providers," too, let's not forget.

SUMMARY:  A chicken in every pot and a Child Custody Attorney in ever case whatsoever (almost) involving children -- or if not a NACC professional, how about a parent coordinator any time there is conflict after divorce?

In short, these people want in your kids' lives as the experts, and to be paid well (tracked poorly) for the service.  You are not invited to the conferences where the planning to force this re-programming onto your life, or your kids, and you most likely don't have the financial backing they do -- either.

Thus, the distance from "We, the People" and "You People" or "Those Parents" is pretty well a bridge that has been already spanned.  

i want to make it very clear -- and do so better on a different blog or so -- that so long as people engage in hand-to-hand combat with their local professionals, and direct individuals to this -- and not to the professionals' organizations -- they will lose more and more ground in this literal siege upon personal privacy, civil rights, and any remaining shreds of what we like to think is an operational "Bill of Rights."  (Use 'em or Lose 'em).

Now parents can run around like chickens with their heads cut off complaining about services, or they can actually look at the communications lines (internet, and financial both), see where the groups are hooking up, and perhaps take it to their local legislators, with a clear message that we will do more than vote -- we will also abstain from services and if necessary engage in other forms of NONviolent civil protest, to make the point.

A lot more could be said, but the message is -- just don't rehash news articles -- look, listen, explore yourself, and become more alert.

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