Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Violence prevention: DC to host major collaborative venture

From U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to legal scholar Barbara Bennett Woodhouse, the speakers at next month's APA-ABA collaborative conference read like a who's who in the field of violence prevention.

To give a flavor:
  • Carl Hart, the neuroscientist whose memoir I recently featured, will speak on the contribution of U.S. drug policy to violence
  • James Garbarino, author of the terrific book Lost Boys: Why Our Sons Turn Violent and How We Can Save Them, will address the developmental effects of violence -- a topic that forensic psychologists confront daily in our practices
  • Mary Ann Dutton, a leading researcher on domestic violence, will discuss preventing intimate partner violence
  • Patrick Tolan and Dewey Cornell will address youth violence in the schools 
  • Judge Jay Blitzman and colleagues will talk about disrupting the 'cradle to prison pipeline' by implementing alternatives to school suspension and exclusion 
  • Charlotte Patterson, a pioneer in LGBT research, will focus on reducing violence against sexual minorities 
  • Mark Soler, an attorney who taught my media law class way back in journalism school, will speak on alternatives to incarceration in juvenile justice 
  • Edward Mulvey will address mental illness and substance abuse in violence 
And that's just for starters. With more than 40 plenary and invited sessions, the lineup goes on and on, with a wide array of programming that should appeal to psychologists, attorneys, judges, legal and social science scholars, and anyone else interested in the roles of law and psychology in addressing the effects of violence:
  • Intergenerational transmission of violence
  • Violence in Native American communities
  • Offender reentry
  • Risk assessment and threat assessment
  • Hate crimes
  • Poverty and race in violence
  • Sexually violent offenders
  • Violence among military veterans
  • Elder abuse
  • and much more
A major goal of the conference, entitled "Addressing the Unspeakable: Confronting Family and Community Violence, The Intersection of Law and Psychology," is to build on the momentum of Eric Holder's Defending Childhood initiative, which aims to address the effects of violence on children, youth and families.

The conference is co-sponsored by the American Psychological Association and the American Bar Association, and continuation education credits will be provided for both legal and mental health professionals. Early registration ends this week, so register now if you're planning to attend.

The preliminary program is HERE; an overview of the event and its logistics is HERE; the online registration form is HERE

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