Neglect & Maltreatment
CHILD USA builds on the extraordinary work of Marci Hamilton, Founder and CEO of CHILD USA, and Rita Swan, founder of CHILD, Inc. Although CHILD, Inc. has dissolved, the archived website remains a rich source of materials on the abuse and neglect of children, especially religious-based medical neglect.
Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy Vol. 14 No. 1, 79-94 • Marci A. Hamilton
There is a cognitive dissonance in current religious liberty discourse. On the one hand, there are vulnerable groups emerging as strong rights holders in the culture, including LGBTQ, women, and children. On the other hand, there are the religious believers who cannot or will not fit this new social order into their worldview and, therefore, assert rights against it.
CNN • Laura Ly
NOVEMBER 20, 2018
A Detroit judge has dropped nearly all the charges against a Michigan doctor accused of performing female genital mutilation on at least nine underage girls, according to court documents.
In a decision filed Tuesday, Judge Bernard Friedman ruled that the federal female genital mutilation law is unconstitutional and that Congress did not have the right to criminalize the practice, and therefore he dismissed six of eight charges in the United States' first federal case involving the procedure.
New England Journal of Medicine • Rita Swan, Ph.D.
NOVEMBER 25, 2016
Christian Science was developed in the late 19th century as one of many drugless healing methods. Its founder, Mary Baker Eddy, repeatedly called it a system of medicine. She founded her Massachusetts Metaphysical College "for medical purposes," and graduated "doctors of Christian Science . . . ."
NYTimes. com • Rita Swan
NOVEMBER 25, 2016
Every kind of child abuse has been rationalized by someone as a religious practice: beatings, dangerous diets, forced marriages, slavery, exorcism, sexual exploitation, genital mutilation, conversion therapy for L.G.B.T. youth and medical neglect.
The Dublin Review • Rita Swan
NOVEMBER 25, 2016
Doug and Rita Swan, were both raised in the Church of Christ, Scientist, and met through a Christian Science study group at Kansas State Teachers College in 1960. They were very active in the church until 1977, when the events described in the following account took place . . .
Verdict • Marci A. Hamilton
SEPTEMBER 17, 2015
Children in the U.S. are routinely sacrificed on the pyre of their parents' faith by pandering politicians without a moral compass. Children don’t vote but insular religious communities often vote as a bloc mandated by the male officials at the top, and that fact is not lost on power-hungry . . .
Paul A. Offit, M.D.
March 10, 2015
In recent years, there have been major outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases among children in the country. Although America is the most medically advanced place in the world, many people disregard modern medicine in favor of using their faith to fight life-threatening illnesses.
Verdict • Marci A. Hamilton
FEBRUARY 12, 2015
For decades the American Academy of Pediatrics and the CDC have strongly recommended that infants and children be immunized for a range of dangerous childhood diseases. In light of the current outbreaks of measles and now mumps, we obviously need to be educated...
Mental Health, Religion, & Culture, Vol. 16 No. 6, 595-611 • Jean Mercer
This paper outlines an unconventional treatment for mental illness, the exorcism or deliverance ritual used by Pentecostals and some other charismatic Christians. Deliverance beliefs and practices are based on the assumption that both mental and physical ills result from possession of the sufferer by demons, and are to be treated by the expulsion of those demons. Deliverance practitioners claim to treat schizophrenia, ADHD, and Reactive Attachment Disorder, and believe that these problems are related to sins either of the person in treatment or of an ancestor. Clinicians and counsellors dealing with clients who partially or completely espouse deliverance beliefs may need to understand their worldviews and to discuss their belief system before managing to engage them in conventional mental health treatments. Unusual ethical problems may also be met in the course of such work.
Boise Weekly • Cameron Rasmusson
March 16, 2016
Matthew was sick again, and his mother, Rita Swan, was worried. The 16-month-old had come down with a dangerous fever three times and, three times, Swan had called her family's Christian Science practitioner as mandated by their religion. Three times, Matthew had recovered from his illness. This, the fourth incident, was worse than any of the others. For the Swans, then a devout Christian Science family living in Detroit, Mich., in 1977, it was enough to consider breaking with church doctrine and taking Matthew to a hospital. The Swans' practitioner was not pleased when she heard the news. "It will be a long, hard road back to Christian Science for you if you do this," she said. Swan hesitated. Matthew had, after all, recovered three times already. The teachings of Christian Science, which claim that disease is an illusion best treated by prayer, appeared to be working. Meanwhile, Matthew was only getting worse.
PBS Frontline • Priyanka Boghani
March 23, 2015
Paul Offit is the co-developer of a vaccine for rotavirus — the leading cause of severe diarrhea in children — and the chief of the division of infectious diseases at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. His books include Vaccines: What You Should Know and Autism’s False Prophets: Bad Science, Risky Medicine, and the Search for a Cure. This is the edited transcript of interviews conducted on Dec. 30, 2009 and March 2, 2010. It was originally published on April 27, 2010.
Science Based Medicine • Jann Bellamy
February 5, 2015
All states try to protect children from neglect, abandonment and mistreatment, such as deprivation of clothing, shelter, food and medical care. This includes civil laws which permit the removal of a child from the home and other protective interventions. Criminal laws protect children as well by, for example, making nonsupport a misdemeanor or criminal neglect a felony. Washington State law prohibits criminal mistreatment of children and other vulnerable persons, such as the frail elderly, by their caregivers.