Meeting with a State Senator
I have been traveling all over the place throughout the month. The month started with my trip to Miami Florida where I appeared on a documentary to appear on PBS and be distributed to 700 Children’s Advocacy Centers in America. I then appeared by myself in a 30 second commercial promoting children’s advocacy centers and that it was a children’s advocacy center that I found my voice and am grateful. It will air on many national networks. I heard MSNBC, CNN, Discovery channel, and others I am waiting to hear on. Not sure when either the documentary or commercial will start airing.
I then traveled to Pittsburg Kansas where I spoke Monday April 5th at Pittsburg State University and did a book signing. It was a great event and met wonderful people.
Last week I went to Norfolk Nebraska from April 12th-14th where I spoke at two events. One in the morning during a child abuse conference and the other in the evening open to the public where I met an incredible young woman who God put in that room to cross paths with me for a reason. I also did a book signing and had a great success.
Moving along to today April 19th. I met with state senator Tim Bivins to discuss Erin’s Law. I was not expecting such a successful meeting. Talking about prayers being answered. Mine were definetly heard. As I prayed last night I said God while you may not have heard my pleas as a young child screaming out to you and my screams went unheard. Can you please let my voice and message be heard tomorrow. Well I believe they were heard. Senator Bivins is on board with Erin’ s law. He is attaching a bill to it and wants me to come speak on the floor to the Senate at the state capital in Springfield Illinois. I had with me Chief of Police Dan Langloss from Dixon, Illinois who has been rallying behind me after he heard me speak at a child abuse conference in Dixon in February. He set up the meeting with Senator Bivins and I cannot thank Dan enough. He is a wonderful man that is all about putting the bad people away and protecting children from abuse. He is doing wonderful things and I wish there were more chiefs of police like him. Just a little fun fact President Ronald Regan’s boyhood home town is Dixon, Illinois.
Senator Bivins thought of many great ideas as I shared my vision for “Erin’s Law” with him. He mentioned that not all teachers are going to be comfortable with teaching this material to children. He suggested that with the help of the community college psychology department that is helping develop the curriclum for schools on sexual abuse for me that I video tape myself demonstrating the curriculum that could be distrubted to schools in the form of a DVD. This DVD can provide lesson plans on safe touch, unsafe touch, how to get away, how to tell today, safe secrets, unsafe secrets. A message for the parents on warning signs and how to continue the conversation at home. This way teachers can use the DVD as a teachable source so the kids are getting the information and it is not coming from someone who does not know how to discuss it or is not comfortable with it. That might send the wrong message to children. Tim Bivins suggested we reach out to Oprah’s production team and see if they can help us with the educational DVD to protect children. I think Oprah would totally support it. The question is how do you get her attention. I love Tim’s idea it is just not that easy. It is not like I can pick up the phone and give Oprah a call.
Tim feels if I can prove that this law will not cost schools then it should pass with flying colors. Who wouldn’t support a law that would protect the innocence of kids. We have other resources we discussed as well that school boards can use such as YWCA in Illinois and ICASA that have trained people that are free that will go into schools and teach age appropriate curriculum on sexual abuse. It is just not enforced the way it should be because their is no law that requires it. Erin’s law will and that is why it will be so important for this law to pass.
Getting the Bill attached was what I thought was going to be the tough part. I feel this is just the start but the thought of being able to address the senate at the capital brings me a sense of justice I never got. While my rapists walk the streets free men, the child they raped is bringing safety and education through the voice they silenced. Getting Erin’s law passed will be the greatest justice I could ever ask for. I hope the people of Illinois will back me and support me in this mission. When I walked out of his office and got back in the car with chief of police Dan Langloss he said “Erin, Tim does not lie to you about something. If he did not think this law was doable he would not be saying what he said in there. He supports this law!” 🙂
Washington D.C. watching out I’m coming, your next after Illinois!
Next stop on my speaking tour. Northern Illinois University tomorrow April 20th.