January 28, 2013
SCP Celebrates Data Privacy Day Today, Releases Video on Importance of Protecting Digital Footprint
To mark Data Privacy Day 2013, Stop Child Predators (SCP), a non-profit organization that combats the sexual exploitation of children, officially kicked-off today by releasing a public service announcement that reminds parents to control and protect their children's online information.
July 24, 2012
Experts Still Want Answers on Google Wi-Spy
With the FCC's Wi-Spy investigation recently ended, leaving "significant factual questions" about whether the company broke the law unresolved, three experts—Stacie Rumenap of StopChildPredators.org; David Jacobs of EPIC.org; and Scott Cleland of Precursor LLC–talk to Mike Wendy of Media Freedom about still wanting answers.
June 4, 2012
New Jersey lawmakers weigh 25-year mandatory prison terms for sex offenders who exploit children
SCP's Stacie Rumenap testified in New Jersey this month in support of Senate Bill 380, a bill known as Jessica's Law that mandates prison sentences of 25 years to life for repeat sex offenders who sexually assault children under the age of 13. Rumenap joined Mark Lunsford, Jessica's father and chairman of SCP's advisory board of directors, in Trenton, where they appeared before the Senate Law and Public Safety Committee.
June 3, 2012
Prologue Communications protects children with AngelGuard™
SCP's John-Michael Donahue had the opportunity to sit down recently with Stephen Price, the founder of Prologue's AngelGuard™ service, an innovative technology that represents a game-changing advance in telephone privacy and security.
As Donahue and Price discussed, technology evolves, which means the way in which predators prey on children also evolves. And with more kids and teens using cell phones these days, it's no surprise that attempts are being made to contact them at every turn.
June 1, 2012
School's out for summer
Memorial Day marks the beginning of summer for a lot of people, and that means enjoying some summer fun.
As pools around the country open their swimming lanes to school-aged kids looking to beat the heat now that school's out, and camps everywhere are welcoming students for the summer, it's important for parents to remember to teach their kids about staying safe, especially now that children and teens will have more unsupervised time on their hands and will come into contact with more strangers than usual.
May 16, 2012
SCP urges members of Congress to question FCC Chairman, other Commissioners about its plans to protect children and families from online threats at annual oversight hearing of the Federal Communications Commission
May 10, 2012
York Court of Appeals rules viewing online child porn not a crime
The New York Court of Appeals ruled recently that viewing child pornography online is not a crime. The decision came after Marist College professor James D. Kent was sentenced to prison after more than 100 images of child pornography were found on his computer's cache (each time someone views a photo online, a copy of the image is automatically saved in the memory cache, which is how photos are retrieved and how they can be tracked).
The court's ruling attempts to distinguish between individuals who view an image of child pornography online against those who actively download and store such images. And in this case, it was ruled that a computer's image cache is not the same as actively choosing to download and save an image.
This decision creates a giant loophole for Internet pornographers: in New York, the courts have essentially said it's legal to view child pornography as long as you don't download it.
May 1, 2012
With the legislative season in many states coming to an end, we are happy to reflect upon some positive changes that occurred within the child safety arena. Since January, multiple states have approved proposals strengthening measures against sex offenders and their online counterparts. We also co-hosted a successful rally to raise awareness for child safety here in Washington, DC, and traveled to Massachusetts to participate in Community Voices' annual advisory board meeting, a partnering organization that supports victims of crime.
April 30, 2012
Louisiana governor signs laws limiting library access by sex offenders, registration of online identities
Last month, the Louisiana Legislature passed several legislative bills cracking down on sexual predators. Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal signed into law one of those bills that will limit access convicted sex offenders have to the state's public libraries. The law applies to offenders whose victims were under 13 years of age. Library boards will have until January 1, 2013, to design guidelines for which offenders must comply and how to do so.
April 10, 2012
SCP's Stacie Rumenap write's for magazine, "Child Abuse Scandal Prompts Lawmakers to Weigh In"
Ask most people involved in the Penn State football program and they will tell you the warning signs were there for more than a decade, disturbing indicators that former assistant coach Jerry Sandusky was breaching boundaries with young boys-or maybe worse. Yet the university's top administrators seemingly swept such suspicions aside, another open question that still demands an answer in the wake of the Penn State sex abuse scandal.
What is clear, however, is that the Sandusky case will raise a renewed consciousness in other communities the way it has been raised in Pennsylvania.
Not surprisingly, Pennsylvania lawmakers were quick to consider legislation just days after news media broke the scandal. Lawmakers in other states such as Maryland and New York were following suit. In fact, approximately 63 bills in 25 states have been introduced in the 2012 legislative session. Forty-eight states currently require at least some professionals to immediately report knowledge or suspicion of child sexual abuse to some authority and eighteen of those states require every adult to be a mandated reporter.
April 4, 2012
Parents of murdered children make stop in DC as part of cross country bike trip to promote laws that protect children from sexual predators
Child protection and victim advocacy groups will gather in Washington, DC on Easter Sunday in support of Mark Lunsford, father of Jessica Lunsford, and other surviving parents of murdered children as they ride "Kross Kountry 4 Kids" to raise awareness of child abuse prevention.
The motorcycle ride stops in Washington, DC, at the Law Enforcement Memorial at Judiciary Square from 1:00-3:00 p.m on Sunday, April 8, 2012. Team members will be distributing blue ribbons, brochures, pins and other informative publications that invite people to get involved and work within their own community to keep children safe and help promote Jessica's Law and the Adam Walsh Act.
March 21, 2012
Kross Kountry 4 Kids – DC Event
This Easter, we invite you to join Stop Child Predators & Community Voices on Sunday, April 8th, as we welcome the Army of Angels motorcycle riders on their "Kross Kountry 4 Kids" bike ride to promote child safety and awareness about predatory crimes. This cross-country tour kicks off April 1st in Sacramento, where riders will return at the end of the month.
March 6, 2012
New Jersey Lawmakers Introduce Legislation Increasing Penalties for Concealing and Harboring Sex Offenders
The New Jersey Senate Law and Public Safety Committee advanced bill S-622 this month. The proposal would make hindering the apprehension and prosecution of a sex offender attempting to evade registration and monitoring requirements under Megan's Law a crime of the third degree with a mandatory minimum sentence of three years in prison.
March 5, 2012
SCP Thanks Attorneys General for Looking into Google's New Privacy Policies
October 24, 2011
Jessie's Dad hits Film Festival in Ft. Lauderdale
The award-winning Jessie's Dad is an incredibly powerful film about love, hope, grief and redemption. It tells the fiercely moving story of Mark Lunsford, who's daughter Jessica was abducted and brutally murdered by a twice-convicted sex-offender. The film follows Mark's transformation from "an uneducated truck driver to a savvy activist," an amazing and heart-wrenching journey of empowerment and hope for the future. Featuring his tireless work as chairman of the Stop Child Predators advisory board, the film follows Mark as he speaks before legislators, "making a difference for all American children, pushing for the passage of Jessica's Law, which toughens penalties against sex offenders."
The film won Best Documentary at the ITN Distribution Film & New Media Festival in Los Angeles, as well as several other awards and nominations, and we're thrilled that Mark's story is being shared with audiences nationwide. Jessie's Dad is being screened this month, on October 30th as part of the Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival. You can view the film's listing within the festival and get free tickets here.
October 7, 2011
Staying Safe on Halloween
It's the beginning of fall which means Halloween is creeping around the corner in just another few weeks. So while taking time to pick out costumes, also take some time to talk to your children about safety while Trick or Treating. The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children released safety tips for parents who are preparing spooky fun for their kids this Halloween. Some of these include:
- Instruct children to stay in well-lit areas, never to take shortcuts, and never to go into isolated areas.
- Ensure that children wear reflective clothing and carry a flashlight or glow stick when traveling during the evening hours.
- Teach your children only to enter homes of people you know, and with your prior permission and only to approach homes that are well-lit both inside and outside.
- Accompany, or make sure a trusted adult accompanies, your younger children to the door of every home they approach.
Fall is also a great time of year to reinforce the importance of internet safety, now that our kids are back in school.
With homework and extra-curriculars in full swing, kids are spending ever-increasing amounts of time online, on the computer, on iPads or smartphones, texting and growing their social networks. While parents may be apprehensive about the amount of time spent online or digitally connected, there are easy rules you can follow to make sure your kids are staying safe. For instance, monitor email and social network profiles, scouring for evidence of bullying. SCP President Stacie Rumenap was recently quoted by Janice D'Arcy in The Washington Post's Lifestyle section, with great tips for parents who have kids online.
You can read that article and Stacie's suggestions here.
September 21, 2011
Community Conversation: Online safety part of back to school, too, says SCP's Stacie Rumenap
With kids back in school, parents are breathing a sigh of relief. Shopping for new clothes is over. Binders and calculators are purchased. Carpools and sports schedules are figured out. But before you celebrate those hours in between making lunches and the kids getting off the bus, remember to incorporate online safety into your back-to-school routine.
September 21, 2011
Safety: SCP's How To Protect Children on the Internet
Doesn't it seem like laptops, smart phones, iPhones and iPads have become physical extensions of our kids? As parents, it's crucial we're aware of the possible pitfalls of the latest technologies, and that predators are sometimes lurking online and that cyberbullies are ready to attack 24/7.
September 21, 2011
Combating cyber bullying and technology's downside
This new school year is bringing an intensified focus on bullying, especially bullying and its modern twin, cyber-bullying.
Today and tomorrow, the U.S. Department of Education will host a two-day summit on bullying that focuses on online harassment. Earlier this month, the media watchdog group Common Sense Media launched it own campaign to combat cyberbullying. Facebook and Time Warner, too, this week joined the effort by launching a new app called Stop Bullying: Speak Up Social Pledge.
All good. Often, though, preventing and avoiding bullying is best accomplished in smaller, living room summits and campaigns. Parents are most needed to guide children and teens as they explore both new social dynamics and the giant, unfamiliar, constantly changing neighborhood online.
The new technologies our kids use to communicate with friends (and sometimes frenemies) can be hard to keep up with. Stacie Rumenap, executive director of the Washington-based Stop Internet Predators suggests that parents follow a few basic guidelines to stay on top of the new terrain.
September 17, 2011
SCP's Stacie Rumenap Writes for the Buffalo News: Monitor kids to protect them from digital dangers
While laptops, smart phones, iPhones and iPads have become physical extensions of our kids, it's crucial we're aware of the possible pitfalls of the latest technologies, and that predators are sometimes lurking online and that cyberbullies are ready to attack 24/7.
But before you close your kid's laptop for good, here are a few simple steps to saying "yes" to technology.
September 13, 2011
SCP President Offers Back-to-School Safety Tips for BizzieMommy.com Readers:
First, be sure to keep an eye on who your child contacts and how much time they spend online. Don't forget to monitor other points of Internet access too, like cell phones and gaming consoles-these devices are much more powerful than making a phone call or playing Space Invaders.
Second, stress to your children that they should never physically meet anyone they've only become friends with online.
Third, talk to your kids about the types of information they post online and how it can impact their reputation and future. Kids can unknowingly give out personal details about their life that could be maliciously used. Web-based mapping applications like Google Street View allow anyone with Internet access to digitally cruise neighborhoods and view 360-degree street-level photographs of homes, schools and parks. This makes it really easy to plan nefarious actions if the person in question has an address they got off of your child's online profile. And embarrassing and inappropriate photos and comments can stay with you forever. While former Google CEO Eric Schmidt suggested that young people can one day "change his or her names" to escape "youthful hijinx" stored on the Internet, that's not the solution parents want to hear. Keep in mind, companies sometimes collect information you might not even realize your kids are giving out. Google collected social security numbers as part of an online "Doodle for Google" art contest. The FTC just levied a $50,000 fine against the gaming software company W3 Innovations for collecting information from children under 13 years old, like email addresses, without first gaining parental consent.
It's also important to know the effects of cyberbullying, the practice of kids insulting one another online in chat rooms, social networking sties, virtual worlds and through text messages. More than half of American teens are affected by cyberbullying, according to the National Crime Prevention Council. Yet most parents are largely unaware of the problem as few teens report incidences of bullying to their parents.
July 27, 2011
Rumenap: Do the Crime, Do the Time
The stories begin with an extreme example of a man convicted of statutory rape when he was a teen for having "consensual" sex with his teenage girlfriend, a crime that lands him on the sex offender registry. Yet, the authors fail to ever mention that the prosecution of teenagers engaging in consensual sex, even if underage, is exceedingly rare.
July 7, 2011
Stacie Rumenap Explains Goals of Stop Child Predators to New York's Statewide News Channel 'Your News Now'
SCP's Stacie Rumenap sat down with reporter Liz Benjamin to discuss efforts in New York to pass stronger prison sentences for sex offenders convicted of committing crimes against children. She also talks about her recent presentation to New York's District Attorneys Association for which she hopes to gain their support.
June 28, 2011
Stop Child Predators Wins Department of Homeland Security's Stop.Think.Connect. PSA Contest
The Stop.Think.Connect. campaign announced the winners of its Public Service Announcement (PSA) Challenge at an event at the White House today. Stop Child Predators' president Stacie Rumenap accepted the organization's award from White House Cybersecurity Coordinator Howard Schmidt, Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke, and Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano. The award is shared with Microsoft and students at Dakota State University.
June 1, 2011
Keeping Kids Safe with Mark Lunsford
Mark Lunsford, chairman of Stop Child Predators' Advisory Board, is a tireless advocate of children's protection and stricter penalties for violent sexual crimes committed against children. He was recently featured on blogtalkradio.com in an article by Sacramento Smiles. Mark's interview begins about halfway through the show and he mentions the importance of passing Jessica's Law in all fifty states. Thanks Mark for your continued support of and partnership with Stop Child Predators!
If you have any questions or would like to get in touch with us at Stop Child Predators, you can always reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also join us in the fight for child safety on Facebook or Twitter and share your thoughts about these issues.
May 20, 2011
SCP releases PSA for Stop.Think.Connect campaign
Stacie Rumenap, president of Stop Child Predators, created a PSA for the contest, in concert with Stop Internet Predators, our sister organization. You can view that PSA on our YouTube channel here. Be sure to subscribe to the channel to stay updated on future videos!
May 19, 2011
SCP President writes for The Hill: "Companies Must be Vigilant with Location-Based Data"
In the wake of the discovery that some mobile devices are tracking and storing users' GPS information, many watchdog groups are calling out for stricter regulations on how this information can be collected, and the ways in which it can be used. This is a serious concern for a variety of consumers, especially parents, whose children might be sharing location information without even knowing it.
I wrote an opinion column about this important issue for The Hill newspaper. In the article, I address the need for parents to be cautious with new technology, and to help their children make decisions about what information to share and what to keep private. Read that article here.
If you have any questions or would like to get in touch with us at Stop Child Predators, you can always reach me at email@example.com. You can also join us in the fight for child safety on Facebook or Twitter and share your thoughts about these issues!
Thanks for reading!
May 3, 2011
Interview with Producer Maniko Barthelemy: The Unlikely Sex Offenders
SCP's Stacie Rumenap sat down with New Orleans writer and film producer, Maniko Barthelemy, who spoke candidly about her latest project on the nearly 350 Louisiana women registered as sex offenders. Barthelemy discovered that these women didn't touch children, and they aren't violent. They've been found guilty of prostitution and are now required to register as sex offenders even though their crime involved two consenting adults.
April 1, 2011
This month, Stop Child Predators released a new national survey that found that Americans overwhelmingly support mandatory sentencing for violent sex offenders who assault children under the age of 13. Read all about the survey by Mason-Dixon polling and why these results are so important in our fight to keep kids safe. You'll also read in this issue about Mark Lunsford and Rosemarie D'Alessandro joining together to urge New Jersey legislators to adopt Jessica's Law. Finally, SCP addresses cyberbullying this month and cues you into the new efforts by the White House to keep kids safe online.
March 21, 2011
77% Favor Mandatory Prison Sentences and GPS Monitoring For Sexual Predators Targeting Children
It comes as no surprise that seventy-seven percent of surveyed American adults say that sex offenders who prey on children should serve 25 years to life for a first offense, and be electronically monitored upon release. Both of these are conditions of a Jessica's Law, currently passed in forty-four states.
March 21, 2011
Victim's Families Lobby NJ Lawmakers to Create Tougher Penalties for Child Sexual Assaults
Stop Child Predators President Stacie Rumenap was joined by Mark Lunsford, Rosemarie D'Alessandro and other victims, child advocates and activists in New Jersey in March to meet with lawmakers and local media in an effort to urge lawmakers to pass "Jessica's Law," a bill named after nine-year old Jessica Lunsford who was brutally raped and murdered in Florida in 2005 by a twice convicted sex offender.
March 21, 2011
Victim's Father Lobbies NJ Lawmakers to Create Tougher Penalties for Child Sex Assaults
By David Levinsky for phillyBurbs.com TRENTON- It was six years ago that a twice-convicted sex offender kidnapped, molested and murdered Mark Lunsford's 9-year-old daughter, Jessica. Since then, 44 states have passed so-called "Jessica laws" that create tougher penalties and restrictions for those convicted of child sexual assaults. But New Jersey isn't one of those state,s a fact that baffles Lunsford, child safety advocates and some lawmakers.
March 11, 2011
President and Mrs. Obama Take on Cyberbullying
National attention was focused on cyberbullying last month when President and Mrs. Obama hosted their first Conference of Bullying Prevention aimed at addressing the serious and sometimes lethal problem of cyberbullying. The conference announce the release of the Administration's new website targeting bullying prevention: StopBullying.gov.
March 1, 2011
This month Stop Child Predators investigates sex offender management various arenas. Read about new legislation introduced by different states to handle the growing number of convicted sex offenders. Some states' measures are more extreme than others, but what is important is that lawmakers are prioritizing children's safety.
February 25, 2011
SCP president writes for GOPUSA: US Marshals, Local Law Enforcement Get It Right On Child Protection
Now that President Obama and Congress are negotiating tough decisions on how best to balance our nation's finances, it is imperative that lawmakers recognize the need for law enforcement to have the funding necessary to protect our children.
February 21, 2011
New Jersey Makes Headway in Child Protection Legislation
Many parents and state lawmakers have grappled with the sexting epidemic among teenagers around the country. "Sexting" is the term used to refer to the sending of illicit images through text-messaging service or email. Many times, a young person will send an image to one recipient, from whom it can be disseminated to a very large audience. If that young person is a minor, then the simple act of sending a text message can be considered producing and distributing child pornography, and therefore a sex-offense that requires registration and carries life-long consequences, as well as possible jail time.
February 15, 2011
Different Roads to Keeping Kids Safe: Trends in Sex Offender Management
States all over the country are beefing up laws addressing how best to enforce sex offender registry requirements and manage the growing number of convicted sex offenders, according to StateNet, a website that tracks activity in state legislatures nationwide. Some of those trends include implementing different forms of Jessica's Law, which requires mandatory sentencing for violent sex offenders and GPS monitoring of parolled offenders. Others include implementing the statues included in the Adam Walsh Act, a 2006 federal law which includes location restrictions and community notification as well as registration with local law enforcement, among other provisions. Additionally, some states are seeing even newer trends emerge such as preemptive notification before a sex offender relocates into a new state, chemical castration, and identifying markers on state IDs like driver's licenses. All of these measures may seem controversial, but they are widely supported in the states where the legislation has been introduced.
January 31, 2011
Super Bowl host area sees spike in sex trafficking: Texas authorities gear up to prevent the buying and selling of children
As Packers and Pittsburgh fans gather to cheer their teams on to victory in this year's Super Bowl, something much more sinister than the wearing of cheese or the snapping of "terrible towels" is occurring behind the scenes.
January 26, 2011
Sign PETITION to encourage lawmakers to pass Jessica's Law in New Jersey, protect children nationwide
Stop Child Predators launched last week a petition to encourage lawmakers to pass Jessica's Law in New Jersey. Now we need your help to collect the 20,000 signatures needed to present to state officials.
January 18, 2011
"STOP. THINK. CONNECT"
Department of Homeland Security is taking online safety head-on, with their Stop.Think.Connect campaign. The goal and message of Stop.Think.Connect is something we can all agree on. With a little caution and foresight, we can make the web safer for everyone.
January 11, 2011
The number of registered sex offenders in the United States is more than 700,000. Every 40 seconds a child is reported missing or abducted, according to the Department of Justice. That translates to over 2,000 children per day, and over 800,000 per year. This is why we began Stop Child Predators, and why our work continues to be so pressing.
January 10, 2011
Career Law Enforcement Official and New York Businessman Join SCP Advisory Board Member
Stop Child Predators (SCP) is excited to welcome our two newest advisory board members, Timothy Hughes, Senior Inspector for the United States Marshals Service, and Joseph Kakaty, Chief Marketing Officer for College Loan Corporation. We had the opportunity to sit down with Tim and Joe to talk about why they chose to be involved with SCP.
January 07, 2011
Stop Child Predators' Stacie Rumenap Available for Interviews on Child Predator Risks of Google's Street View
Washington, DC - Stacie Rumenap, executive director of Stop Child Predators, is available for media interviews to discuss the child predator dangers of Google's Street View program. Available through Google Maps, Street View is an entirely new threat to families and children as predators can easily misuse the technology to view homes and families without privacy restrictions.
December 9, 2010
California Judge in Jessica's Law Ruling Has Controversial Past
Stop Child Predators has been a consistent proponent of Jessica's Law, in collaboration with it's author Mark Lunsford, after whose daughter it was named. We've been met with consistent success in our efforts to see Jessica's Law passed, although a minor setback was encountered in California in November of 2010. L.A. Superior Court Judge Peter Espinoza overturned a provision of Jessica's Law that prohibits registered sex offenders from living within 2,000 feet of a school or park
December 9, 2010
SCP opposes nomination of Judge Chatigny to U.S. Court of Appeals, lenient on sex offenders
Stop Child Predators recently draft a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee opposing the nomination of Judge Chatigny to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
You can find the full text of the letter here
December 9, 2010
State registries provide same information free of charge as new iPhone app
Stop Child Predators is committed to the creation of a national, uniform sex offender registry, easily searchable and accessible by the public and law enforcement agencies alike. Until such a registry is created, however, the public has access to individual state registries and we encourage you to visit such registries often.
November 4, 2010
SCP President Stacie Rumenap on KQKE
SCP President Stacie Rumenap talked to KQKE Radio Host Scott Draughon today on "My Technology Lawyer" about the dangers to consumer's privacy in today's fast-moving world of Internet innovations. Rumenap discussed the recent FTC decision to turn a blind eye toward Google after the company admitted it collected unauthorized data from wireless networks while it was collecting data for its Street View mapping program. She explained the process by which Google collects images of streets and houses for Street View, and how the photos are collected without the consent of the people who are featured, often times including children playing in their own front yards. Hear the radio interview in its entirety here (mp3).
November 3, 2010
SCP Recognizes the 10th Anniversary of the COPA Commission Report
Last month marks the 10-year anniversary of the COPA Commission Report. The COPA Commission was established by the Child Online Protection Act in October 1998 in order to identify methods to prevent minors from accessing harmful online material. After evaluating the effectiveness of various protective technologies and their effects on privacy and First Amendment rights and law enforcement, the COPA Commission released its final report to Congress on October 20, 2000.
November 3, 2010
Chelsea's Law Takes a Road Trip
Earlier this year, Chelsea's Law was enacted in California with wide bi-partisan support across the state. Chelsea's Law, named for 17-year-old Chelsea King who was raped and murdered in San Diego by a convicted sex offender, toughens sex offender laws and restrictions. The law was authored by Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher in partnership with the family of Chelsea King.
November 3, 2010
Look Out, Cyberbullies
One of the sad truths of life is that some people are bullies. And while we've all dealt with our own, the Internet has caused the problem to get out of hand. Unlike regular bullying, cyberbullying can reach a much wider audience, and the proof of the attacks lasts forever on the Internet. The anonymity of the Internet has encouraged bullies to be even crueler than ever. This year, there have been several high-profile cases of cyberbullying leading to suicide, such as Phoebe Prince, and more recently, Tyler Clementi. The one silver lining in all the cyberbullying tragedies is that people are starting to take notice and take action.
November 3, 2010
SCP, local leaders awarded "Spirit of Compassion" by Massachusetts Advocacy Group
Stop Child Predators Chairman Mark Lunsford and President Stacie Rumenap were recently awarded the Community VOICES "Spirit of Compassion" Award for their efforts in passing Jessica's Law in Massachusetts. Jessica's Law, which now exists in 44 states, toughens sex offender laws by creating mandatory minimum sentencing for convicted sex offenders who prey on children.
October 7, 2010
Governor Tells Sex Offenders 'Don't Mess With Texas'
Texas Governor Rick Perry announced recently that he intends to make his state's sex offender laws the toughest in the country, and hopes his colleagues in other states will follow his lead.
October 7, 2010
Parents of Child Abuse, Abduction Promote Safety
Last month, SCP wrote about two fathers crossing the country on bicycles in hopes of bringing awareness to the need for tougher penalties for child predators. As members of the Surviving Parents Coalition, Ed Smart and Ahmad Rivazfar left New York on bicycles in late August and traveled through 12 states on their awareness campaign, "Ride for Their Lives." The ride ended last month in Los Angeles. SCP Chairman Mark Lunsford joined them, riding his motorcycle in solidarity for the duration of the trip.
October 7, 2010
Microsoft, Safety Expert Releases New Data on Social Networking Practices Among Children and Parents
It's hard to pick up a newspaper today and not read a story about growing concerns over the risks associated with social networking. Heightened regulatory scrutiny, pressure from public interest advocates for increased transparency and additional accountability, as well as concern among educators, parents and caregivers pushes online safety to new levels. Yet, Internet use has become such a part of our lives, it's sometimes easy to forget to use basic safety precautions when going online.
September 7, 2010
Chelsea's Law clears final legislative step, heads to Governor to become law
After six month of work, "Chelsea's Law," California Assembly Bill 1844, cleared its final legislative hurdle and passed the State Assembly with a unanimous vote. The measure awaits a signature from Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger who pledged his support for the bill.
September 4, 2010
Dads biking cross-country to stop crimes against children
The most devastating thing a parent can face is having their child be a victim of a terrible crime. Sadly, Ed Smart, Ahmad Rivazfar and far too many other parents have faced just that. Smart's daughter, Elizabeth, was abducted from her own bedroom when she was just 14. She was held captive for nine months and raped repeatedly by her abductor. Rivazfar's two daughters, 6 and 8, were abducted, raped and had their throats slit. Only one survived.
September 1, 2010
Back-to-school shopping includes Internet safety, education tips
The back-to-school shopping list these days often includes laptops and cell phones. The instant access and convenience afforded by such electronic devices make them ideal for studying, socializing, and coordinating schedules.
August 12, 2010
SCP president writes for gopusa.com, discussing the Department of Justice's National Strategy for Child Exploitation Intervention that outlines the effect technology has on the ease in which to distribute child pornography.
The report points out that the expansion of the Internet since the mid-1990s has led to an explosion in the market for child pornography, making it easier to create, access and distribute images of abuse, Rumenap notes. She adds that advances in computer memory storage and the increased speed of downloading also allows for more information to be shared faster.
July 30, 2010
SCP president opines in The DailyCaller that while the Internet brings new innovations it also brings drawbacks.
She points to Google's Street View software as an example. It was recently discovered that Street View was collecting unauthorized data from individual families' home computers. The even bigger problem, she notes, is that such vehicles take photos of unsuspecting neighbors regularly without their consent. These photos are then included on online maps for anyone to see. Beyond the obvious pitfalls of collecting any kind of information unbeknownst to consumers, yet alone not informing them for what purposes the data will be used or what will happen to it, photos themselves could be used for malicious purposes.
July 6, 2010
SCP Attends Summer Meeting of National Association of Attorneys General, Offers "Do Not Track" Proposal to Privacy Working Group
On June 14 and 15, SCP President Stacie Rumenap participated in the National Association of Attorneys General summer meeting in Seattle, Washington. The conference highlighted efforts by state attorneys general to use technology to protect the public, with an emphasis on preventing the online sexual exploitation of children which has reached epic proportions.
July 5, 2010
Chelsea's Law Continues to Gain Support from California Lawmakers
As reported in May's newsletter, Chelsea's Law, California Assembly Bill 1844, continues to make its way through the California legislature, having passed out of the state's Senate Public Safety Committee June 29. The measure, authored by Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher in partnership with the family of Chelsea King, is focused on ensuring the protection of children from violent sexual predators. The bill passed the Committee unanimously.
July 4, 2010
California Senate Bill Misses Its Goal to Promote Internet Safety
With Mother's Day right around the corner I wanted to recognize my Mother and all of the other wonderful Mothers and caregivers who nurture, protect and care for our children every day.
May 7, 2010
Mother's Day Message
With Mother's Day right around the corner I wanted to recognize my Mother and all of the other wonderful Mothers and caregivers who nurture, protect and care for our children every day.
Today's children are exposed to more experiences, more people, and more information than they were when I was growing up. I remember riding my favorite yellow bike equipped with a banana seat and flowered basket down the block to piano lessons. By myself. My elementary school was in my own neighborhood so I walked home from school every day. By myself. When my mother volunteered to serve as the Girl Scout leader of my troop, no one checked up on her background, nor did anyone question her motives. Times are different. Many things that used to be commonplace and taken for granted do not exist in today's world.
May 6, 2010
Stop Child Predators Applauds Sens. Klobuchar, Thune for Introducing Legislation to Restrict Access to Child Pornography
Washington, DC-Stop Child Predators today commended Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and John Thune (R-SD) for introducing bi-partisan legislation that will help prevent the proliferation of child pornography by requiring peer-to-peer (P2P) file-sharing distributors to obtain the informed consent of users before information on their computers is shared. S. 3027, The P2P Cyber Protection and Informed User Act, was introduced to the Senate in February. It is the Senate version of H.R. 1319, which passed the House of Representatives last December with wide bi-partisan sponsorship and strong support from Stop Child Predators.
May 4, 2010
Stop Child Predators Commends Maryland Governor, Lawmakers for Toughening Sex Offender Laws
Annapolis, MD-Stop Child Predators President Stacie Rumenap joined lawmakers, activists and victims Tuesday in Annapolis as Governor Martin O'Malley signed a package of bills designed to crack down on sex offenders into law.
The new laws include requiring a mandatory 15-year prison sentence for offenders who commit more serious sex offenses or rape against a child, up from five years under existing law; eliminating the possibility of a reduced prison sentence for good behavior; and lifetime GPS monitoring for violent and repeat sex offenders. The new laws will bring Maryland in compliance with the Adam Walsh Act.
April 12, 2010
SCP's president writes for GOPUSA.com, Court Rules FCC Lacks Authority to Regulate Internet
Walk the halls of Comcast offices this week and your conversation may be drowned out by cheers now that a federal court ruled Tuesday in favor of Comcast and against the Federal Communications Commission in the agency's attempt to oversee the Internet and force the cable giant to change the way it manages its broadband network.
The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled 3-0 that the FCC exceeded its authority when it required Comcast to give equal treatment to all Internet traffic over its network.
March 11, 2010
SCP congratulates Wyoming lawmakers for passing Jessica's Law, governor to sign bill into law today
Governor Dave Freudenthal will sign into law today H.B. 64, Wyoming's version of Jessica's Law that creates a 25-year mandatory minimum sentence for adults convicted of sexually assaulting children under the age of 13.
February 22, 2010
Stop Child Predators applauds Federal Trade Commission for warning of improper release of consumer data on P2P networks
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced Monday that they have notified over 100 organizations that sensitive information has been shared from the organizations' computer networks and is available on peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing networks. Information on P2P networks can be accessed by other users of the network and used to commit identity theft or fraud.
February 10, 2010
Stop Child Predators Urges Wyoming Lawmakers to Support Mandatory Sentencing for Convicted Sex Offenders
H.B. 64 Referred to House Judiciary Committee, Hearing Scheduled for February 12
Stop Child Predators applauded Wyoming State Representative Lori Millin today for sponsoring H.B. 64, a bill that would create a 25-year mandatory minimum sentence for first degree sexual assault of a minor when the actor is at least 18-years of age and the victim is less than 13-years of age. The House Judiciary Committee will consider the legislation this Friday.
February 3, 2010
"Mean Girls" go viral
When I was in 6th grade, my best friend from elementary school "broke up" with me - apparently, I was too nerdy for her liking - which consisted of her spreading rumors to anyone who would listen. Mostly, she said mean things about me. Luckily, my middle school taunts were limited to the playground. Not so for today's tweens and teens as bullies have taken to the Internet, where their ridicule can be seen by anyone with an Internet connection and can last a lifetime.
February 1, 2010
Stop Child Predators Encourages Parents to Watch Digital Nation
PBS documentary studies effects on adults, kids who juggle multiple electronic devices
Washington, DC On Tuesday, February 2, PBS will air FRONTLINE'S Digital Nation: Life on the Virtual Frontier, a documentary on what it means to be human in a 21st-century digital world where digital media and the World Wide Web have transformed virtually every aspect of the way people learn and work to how they socialize and even conduct war.
January 25, 2010
Stop Child Predators Supports Legislation Restricting Access to Child Pornography on Government Computers
H.R. 4098 Referred to the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform
Washington, DC Today Stop Child Predators applauded Representative Ed Towns (D-NY) for introducing the Secure Federal File Sharing Act, H.R. 4098, that will help prevent the proliferation of child pornography by prohibiting the download, installation or use of open-network peer-to-peer file sharing software by government employees on all federal computers. The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform will consider the legislation.H.R. 4098
December 10, 2009
SCP's president writes for GOPUSA.com, In Search Of The New 'World's Greatest Rock Band'
The Super Bowl is one of the most-watched broadcasts on American television each year, with an estimate of over 100 million viewers tuning in for at least some of the game.
If you're anything like me, the halftime show is the highlight of the game. In recent years, they've become increasing elaborate and featured the biggest musical stars. In 2002, the halftime show starring U2 honored victims of the September 11th attacks. Mostly, the NFL gets it right when scheduling performers, even if there is an occasional "wardrobe malfunction" like in 2006. Which is why it's shocking that the 2010 halftime show delivers a slap in the face to child victims of sex crimes.
November 17, 2009
Join SCP President Stacie Rumenap at the ParentalRights.org rally on Capitol Hill in support of Universal Children's Day on Friday, November 20, 2009
November 16, 2009
Peer-to-Peer File Sharing: Pandora's Box of Child Porn?
Peer-to-peer (P2P) networks are composed of participants that directly share resources without intermediary network hosts or servers.
P2P technology joined the national conversation with the popularity and controversy surrounding Napster and other free music sharing services in the late 1990s. And while the technology has been in practice much longer, with many useful and legal purposes, recent statistics indicate such networks create fertile ground for swapping pornographic material of minors. Pedophiles use P2P file sharers in an effort to avoid law enforcement scrutiny of Internet Service Provider's (ISP) servers and other aspects of the Internet often policed.
Some in Congress have taken notice of the proliferation of child pornography through P2P, advancing legislation and regulation to contain it. Law enforcement and industry leaders are also working to combat the problem. Stop Child Predators highlights these efforts in its latest publication, "Peer-to-Peer File Sharing: Pandora's Box of Child Porn?"
November 15, 2009
SCP partner 'Community VOICES' commends Massachusetts legislature for passing Jessica's Law, thanks DAs for prosecuting first case under the law that requires mandatory sentence of 15 years in prison for child rape
We hear the horror stories about children like Jessica Lunsford, abducted from her bedroom, raped and murdered by a repeat sex offender in Florida. We see the photos of kids like 12-year-old Alyssa Presti murdered in her bedroom by Level 3 sex offender Michael Bizanowicz after he brutally raped her mother in the living room of their Woburn home. And Massachusetts will never, and should never, forget Jeffrey Curley, who was lured by "friends" with the promise of a new bike, only to be brutally raped and murdered. The aftermath is always the same, our hearts break for the grieving families, people become outraged and others try to convince themselves that it could never happen in their communities or worse, to their own children. All of these cases have two common elements: the first is, the victims were targeted to be sexually abused, and the second is, the perpetrators are repeat offenders who previously served little or no time in prison for their crimes.
October 19, 2009
SCP's president writes for GOPUSA.com, Wal-Mart, Parents Spar Over Child Pornography
Last month, a Peoria, Arizona couple made news as they temporarily lost custody of their three young daughters after Wal-Mart and local authorities deemed the couple's bath time photographs of their children child pornography. The couple was also placed on a sex offender registry, and the wife lost her job as a teacher.
September 2, 2009
Monitoring Sex Offenders
The arrest of registered sex offender Phillip Garrido has raised questions regarding how closely sex offenders are monitored in the U.S. SCP Advisory Chair Mark Lunsford tells CBS News more needs to be done to track the whereabouts of registered sex offenders.
August 13, 2009
Attorney General's CyberSafety Presentation Educates Parents, Protects Children
TALLAHASSEE, FL - Attorney General Bill McCollum today joined Stop Internet Predators, an initiative of the national non-profit organization Stop Child Predators, to educate parents and members of the community on the dangers cyber predators pose to children. The Orange County Council of PTA/PTSAs assisted in arrangingg the Orlando event, which was open to parents in Orange County and the surrounding area.
July 28, 2009
SCP’s President Stacie Rumenap talks to Florida’s WTXL ABC news anchor about the importance of Internet safety for children as they navigate the web.
July 28, 2009
SCP recognized by Florida State Cabinet for its efforts to inform parents and teachers about new technology helping predators target kids.
July 10, 2009
SCP Joins U.S. Marshals Service at Congressional Briefing to Tout Adam Walsh Act and Operation Falcon
The U.S. Marshals always get their man, but in Massachusetts last month alone they dragged from swamps and other sordid hideaways an astonishing 558 wanted criminals on 910 warrants - 51 of them fugitive sex offenders.
May 12, 2009
Stop Internet Predators Honors Attorneys General from Rhode Island, North Carolina and Florida with Champion of Online Safety Award
PHILADELPHIA - Stop Internet Predators, an organization committed to keeping children safe online, today honored Rhode Island Attorney General Patrick C. Lynch, North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper and Florida Attorney General Bill McCollum with the “Champion of Online Safety Award” at a press conference at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Philadelphia.
April 29, 2009
SCP's Executive Director: 'Online predators a concern in Florida'
My own experience indicates that child safety crosses party lines and can be successful only when policymakers, community leaders and parents nationwide are united in their concern for the security of our children. And if the discussion leads to better protecting our families, then it should absolutely be a part of any political discussion. Child protection, after all, touches the lives of everyone.
March 17, 2009
SCP's Executive Director Writes for GOPUSA.com, "Dating 2.0"
On weekend get-aways with my college girlfriends, we often look back and laugh at our fashion missteps and dating dramas... These days, however, even my most embarrassing moments and questionable style choices seem practically quaint. Visit any college campus today and you will find eighteen-year-olds who could pass for late twenty-somethings any day. Enter a high school and it is not much better. Stiletto heels, low-rise jeans and designer bags are today's uniform for young women, starting at increasingly younger ages. And with these grown-up outfits also come grown-up behaviors.
Move over, Hugh Hefner--today's teens are distributing electronically nude self-portraits, in a practice called "sexting" if it is done by cell phone. And this latest trend has parents and school administrators rightfully worried.
March 17, 2009
Stop Child Predators Urge Maryland Lawmakers to Step Up Fight Against Online Predators
SCP's executive director testified today in Annapolis on the complexity of online safety, warning lawmakers that safeguards need to be put into place to make the Internet a less dangerous place for children and teens. Rumenap told House and Senate Judiciary Committee members that parental controls help empower parents, who often struggle to stay up-to-date with the latest technologies. Such controls, she said, enable parents to set guard rails for their children's behavior and reinforce "parenting moments" when they are not able to directly watch their child online.
March 4, 2009
Stop Child Predators Supports Legislation Restricting Access to Child Pornography, Urges Congress to Pass Informed P2P User Act
Washington, DC Today Stop Child Predators applauded Members of Congress for introducing bi-partisan legislation that will help prevent the proliferation of child pornography by requiring peer-to-peer (P2P) file-sharing distributors to obtain the informed consent of users before information on their computers is shared. The Informed P2P User Act of 2009 is similar to last year's HR 7176, and was introduced by Representatives John Barrow (D-GA) and Mary Bono Mack (R-CA).
February 28, 2009
Jessie's Ride draws hundreds of riders, supporters to raise awareness of child safety
February 9, 2009
Internet Safety Advocates Recommend Safety Tips to Keeping Kids Safe Online
Groups also aim to increase awareness for Safer Internet Day, February 10th
To help raise consumer awareness for Safer Internet Day, a day which promotes safer and more responsible use of online technology and mobile phones among children and young people, Americans for Technology Leadership and Stop Child Predators encouraged Americans to follow five easy steps to help families stay safer online. The recommendations come on the heels of a major study published by Harvard University's Berkman Center for Internet & Society, which found that one of the greatest threats children face online comes from peers who bully or harass.
February 4, 2009
Stop Internet Predators Praises Manchester, New Hampshire for Elevating Issue of Child Safety in Internet Age
Mayor proclaims the city's dedication to protecting children from online predators
Manchester, NH SCP's Stacie Rumenap joined Mayor Frank C. Guinta as he issued a proclamation congratulating the City of Manchester and local law enforcement for protecting children from sexual abuse and exploitation. He also declared February 3, 2009 as Stop Internet Predators Awareness Day.
January 14, 2009
SCP's Executive Director Writes for GOPUSA.com, "Cyberbullies Beware"
Bullying is a sad fact of life for many children, and unfortunately, bullies aren't confined to the school playground anymore. They've gone high-tech and are now online. Cyberbullies, as they're called, hide behind the relative anonymity of the Internet to intimidate, insult and harass others online, without much fear of consequence. Yet experts who study the issue say this modern incarnation of bullying can be more damaging to victims than traditional tactics like fist fights and classroom taunts.
December 4, 2008
Group Helps Protect Against Web Predators
As Stop Internet Predators' campaign gains momentum, ABC News caught up with Executive Director Stacie Rumenap during her recent trip to Pittsburgh, PA to promote the group's latest online safety campaign.
October 17, 2008
National Groups Warn Google Street View may be Harmful to Children's Safety
A recent article published in the Knoxville News Sentinel highlighted the efforts of Knox County Schools in Tennessee to help kids learn how to protect themselves better while online. Stacie Rumenap, executive director of Stop Child Predators and Stop Internet Predators commended the school on its efforts, but she also reminds readers that "while children can and should be taught ways to recognize predators and solicitations while using applications such as Facebook and MySpace, families should also be aware of applications they may be participating in unknowingly."
October 06, 2008
Group Fears Google Street View May Be Used by Child Predators
Boston's Fox25 News caught up with Stop Child Predators' Executive Director Stacie Rumenap during her recent trip to Manchester, NH to promote SCP's online safety campaign. Roadside images that Google Street View provides of homes, playgrounds and school buildings could be an ideal tool for child predators, Rumenap told Fox25.
September 27, 2008
Stop Child Predators Supports Legislation Restricting Access to Child Pornography
Stop Child Predators applauded Members of Congress for introducing bi-partisan legislation that will help prevent the proliferation of child pornography by requiring peer-to-peer file-sharing distributors to obtain the informed consent of users before information on their computers is shared. The Informed P2P User Act, HR 7176, was introduced by Representatives John Barrow (D-GA), Joe Barton (R-TX) and Mary Bono Mack (R-CA).
September 21, 2008
SCP's Executive Director writes for GOPUSA.com, "New Technologies Threaten Child Privacy, Safety"
Imagine a tool that allows anyone from the comfort of their home to view photographic images of the most likely route your child walks to school, or to calculate the distance between your front door and your child's school bus stop. What if a stranger could view images of the entrances to your local park, find the location of your family's bedroom windows, or even worse, see a photograph of your child playing in your own front yard?
While these scenarios may seem lifted straight from George Orwell's 1984, the technology they describe is in fact very real.
September 16, 2008
Stop Child Predators Commends Oprah for Supporting Senate Bill Targeting Internet Predators
Alarming episode informed viewers of the prominence of online child predation
Stop Child Predators applauded The Oprah Show for tackling the serious and disturbing phenomenon of child predators and online trafficking of child pornography and for helping to raise awareness of U.S. Senate Bill 1738, the Protect Our Children Act.
July 21, 2008
New campaign raises child safety concerns over Google's "Street View"
Stop Child Predators' latest initiative will educate and empower parents and communities on rising online child safety threats.
July 9, 2008
SCP's Executive Director writes for GOPUSA 'Supreme Court Rules Child Rape Is Less Deserving Of Capital Punishment Than Murder'
In a 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court recently struck down a Louisiana law that allowed capital punishment for an adult convicted of raping a child under the age of 12 (Kennedy v Louisiana).
June 26, 2008
Testimony Advocates New Searches for Child Pornography
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View Prof. Sales' testimony
June 25, 2008
Stop Child Predators Joins Parents of Sexually Abused Children at Massachusetts State House
NECN TV: Boston, Mass. - Stacie Rumenap, Executive Director of Stop Child Predators, joined parents of sexually abused children in Massachusetts Wednesday to push state lawmakers to pass Jessica's Law, which would carry tougher penalties for people convicted of sex crimes against children. NECN's Greg Wayland reports.
May 19, 2008
In a 7 to 2 opinion, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld a 2003 federal law targeting child pornographers. Last June, Stop Child Predators joined a friend of the Court brief before the case, United States v. Michael Williams. SCP was joined by child advocacy organizations including the Jessica Marie Lunsford Foundation, The Joyful Child Foundation, The KlaasKids Foundation and the National Law Center for Children and Families. U.S. v. Williams is an appeal from a federal court ruling that struck down a law that prohibited individuals from marketing and trafficking child pornography on the Internet.
May 05, 2008
SCP Joins FUND ADAM in Urging Congress to Fund the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006
February 28, 2008
Stop Child Predators filed reply comments with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on behalf of a coalition of national, non-profit organizations broadly representing the interests of parents, children, and law enforcement officers.
The coalition argued that any new rules governing broadband industry practices should not interfere with the ability of Internet Service Providers to make sure their networks are not used to transmit child pornography.
February 20, 2008
SCP Executive Director Joins Mark Lunsford in Colorado to Fight for GPS Monitoring of Sex Offenders
February 6, 2008
Study: Wisconsin Window Legislation is Constitutional
June 27, 2007
Protecting America's Children from Sexual Predators
June 8, 2007
Stop Child Predators joined a friend of the Court brief before the U.S. Supreme Court on an important child pornography case, United States v. Michael Williams. SCP was joined by child advocacy organizations including the Jessica Marie Lunsford Foundation, The Joyful Child Foundation, The KlaasKids Foundation and the National Law Center for Children and Families.
U.S. v. Williams is an appeal of a federal court striking down a law that prohibited individuals from marketing and trafficking child pornography on the Internet. The case is scheduled for review by the Supreme Court later this year.
April 19, 2007
Stop Child Predators Applauds New York Legislator for Introducing Jessica's Law
March 19, 2007
Study: The Constitutionality of GPS Tracking of Convicted Sex Offenders
March 8, 2007
Stop Child Predators Mourns Senseless Death Of Jessica Lunsford
August 6, 2006
Stop Child Predators Lauds Swift Action by Lawmakers in Passing Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006
August 2, 2006
Viet Dinh writes for Human Events: Sexual Predation of Children Legislation Is Triumph for GOP
May 24, 2006
Executive Director Rumenap Interviewed by Nebraska's Pilot-Tribune & Enterprise
May 24, 2006
Sexual Offenses Against Children Act Gains Unanimous Approval From the National Board of the American Legislative Exchange Council
May 22, 2006
Stop Child Predators Names Stacie D. Rumenap Executive Director
Tuesday, August 16, 2005
California Governor introduces strong new measure to help combat sexual offenses against children.
Please check back often for new information and recent developments.