(NASHVILLE, TN), September 20, 2010 — State Senators Jack Johnson (R-Franklin) and Dolores Gresham (R-Somerville) have been appointed to serve as members of the Second Look Commission. The Commission was put into place by the General Assembly this year to review cases and procedures related to severe child sexual abuse to determine if they were handled in a manner that provides adequate protection to the children.
“This will be challenging work,” said Senator Johnson. “I come to this commission not only as a senator, but as a father. “No child should have to suffer this kind of abuse and we need to make sure we have every protection possible in place to prevent such acts.”
Only two percent of the 750,000 pedophiles identified by computer in the United States have been investigated according to expert testimony provided to the legislature last year. The Commission will be administratively attached to the Tennessee Commission on Children and Youth.
The 18-member Commission’s findings and recommendations will address all stages of investigating and attempting to remedy severe child abuse. It will also look at the risk of severe child abuse victims being returned to an environment where a second abuse might occur. In addition the panel will look at the procedures used by juvenile courts which have jurisdiction over criminal and civil child abuse and neglect, as well as the laws used to determine whether or not an alleged perpetrator is prosecuted. Finally, the Commission will examine the manner in which severe child abuse data is collected by government entities and any representation provided to victims.
“I look forward to examining the facts and seeing what we can do to improve our safety network and court system to help these children,” concluded Gresham.