I do my best to deliver factual information. The "Documents" pages are there for you to look and see for yourself. An innocent man is in prison for crimes committed by the corrupt, who run the reservation the way a criminal organization would run a city if they had all levels of government supporting and protecting them.
There are many more Good People in Spirit Lake than there are corrupt, evil people there. It is the system that is corrupt, evil and I expose here all that I can.
I can be reached at this email: Contact Cat . I respond to most of my emails, however, I reserve the right to not rspond to whack jobs. I keep all information confidential. For those who wish to attack, you'll either be ignored, or, if you are really clever, you'll end up on the Moron Squad page. Some insults are more entertaining than others. I share with the class.
For those interested: The 13th Mandated Report is out. No government Agency has yet to properly reply to any of them.
April 21, 2014 -----Printer Version (9)
Of Turnip Trucks, Cracks & Crackpots
There are no ‘cracks’ for these children to ‘fall through’ as if the system was overall sound and well-run, based on educated policies and practices, with only rare incidents and occurrences that could not be foreseen.
These children are being tortured, raped and abused, on the rez and throughout the nation, by the system that practices willful blindness, and learns nothing from its mistakes, nor the hundreds of deaths of children every year.
There are only crackpots and ignorant/greedy politicians whose only goal is to climb their political ladders, and mindlessly groom the corruption that fails the children, and all of us, more and more each year.
These children are being shoved into a system that has no intention of protecting them or keeping them safe. They are being kicked down elevator shafts and the doors closing behind them, quickly, so their screams are not heard and their voices never counted.
Bureaucratic incompetence, apathy, and evil in the system that is bent towards protecting those who harm them as well as capitalizing on their plight, supported by our tax dollars and answerable to no one.
When JooYeung Chang, “Call me Joo” said she was trying to understand “why the system isn’t working,” I gave her and her Just-fell-Off-The-Turnip-Truck act a pass because she had only been with the agency (ACF) for six months and that’s not nearly enough time to grasp that children being raped is a crime, much less how criminal it has been that not a single Federal Agency, including hers, has done anything to investigate or push other agencies to investigate these crimes.
In fact, Call Me Joo was probably unaware that her own Agency was interfering and preventing a Federally Mandated Reporter from issuing any further Mandated Reports, and how not a single one of the several hundred reports of rape and child rapes have been investigated by any Federal Agency on Spirit Lake Rez. Further, none of the abuses has been investigated, with rare exception, by any Federal Agency (all of which have jurisdiction, mind you, the protocol is clear) have investigated the abuses nor the blatant corruption that has led up to the rampant abuses. Stop the reports, muzzle the reporter and the crimes no longer exist.
Joo was ‘new’. Or so it seemed. She had just fallen off that Turnip Truck and was only trying to help, and really did not understand what is obvious to everyone except her and the ACF. (I think it’s a fair bet that all my readers know that child rape is a crime and that protecting the abusers and the corrupt who participate in that crime is also a crime. Let me know if I’m wrong about any of you, k?) Just not New Joo.
The Omnibus Bill (pg. 21) signed into law earlier this year, clearly states that it is the responsibility of the Federal Government to protect these children – specifically, the Children of Spirit Lake Nation Reservation.
And yet, there was the entire array of ACF Leadership sitting at that table at that meeting last week: McMullen, Kennerson, Sparks, & Turnip Truck Joo, each denying their responsibility and falsely stating that it was the responsibility of the State and Tribal Governments. Apparently, they not only make up laws as they see fit, but they also ignore laws as suits them.
It was as if they were completely unaware of that Ominibus Bill and it’s particular reference to the Children of Spirit Lake Reservation. Trust me, when that Bill was signed by President Obama, a flurry of worry blew through the ACF like a zephyr, tossing papers and making eyes water, hatching more CYA (cover your ass) scenarios than Easter has Bunnies.
So now the ACF not only chooses to ignore the Omnibus Bill and its specifics to these children, they also choose to ignore their own agency Mission Statement which includes their obligation to make children safe.
Then I learn that not only did Joo not fall off the Turnip Truck, she had been, essentially, one of the ones driving it. She was far, FAR from unfamiliar with the system and its failures, she was in a leadership role at Casey Family Programs, making sure that it failed.
For those unfamiliar with Casey Family Foundation, and I admit I was in the dark about who they were, and how much influence they have had over all of the nation’s Social Services Agencies, at every level, they are a Mega Dollar tax exempt enterprise that purports to advise governments at all levels, on policy, practices & procedures for Child Protection--- based solely on think tank theory, ideals without follow up or foundation, that have been one of the major reasons so many child protective agencies are so dysfunctional.
That they took an interest in Child Protective Services, with greatest focus on Foster Care, sounds good, right? The founder of UPS is the one that came across this visionary idea…this is his family’s foundation and their programs. Sounds good, right? Philanthropic even? Noble? Generous? Been in place since 1966.
Except that the ideas are deeply flawed, and children have been put at greater and greater risk everywhere these Programs are instituted, and the organization, as evidenced by Joo’s comments “I’m trying to understand why this system isn’t working” shows that nothing has been learned by anyone in that organization, even as it has caused tens of thousands of children to be without protection from their rapists and abusers, and hundreds of them murdered every year in ways so grotesque we can’t wrap our minds around it.
The system isn’t working because there is no investigation, no follow-up in cases of extreme abuse. It isn’t working because of a policy such as the one put in place in Florida and elsewhere, that works to protect the family as a unit first and foremost, with no regard for the danger to the children—as the evidence clearly shows. A system that only requires an abuser, a rapist, to sign a note or just make a promise to never do that again, is sufficient to close the file, delete the history, close the case, and then when it happens again, with no history to show it is repeat offenses or multiple offenses, the only requirement is that they promise never to do that again, and again, and again until those children are so damaged or murdered that we are horrified by the results and have no clue how it could have gotten that bad.
Casey Family is able to have this kind of influence over all levels of government, from local to State to Federal because of the corrupt practices of appointing political friends and cronies to these top positions, rather than those most qualified by education and experience in the field, as evidenced by the head of the ACF having her position based solely on her background in child welfare “as being a foster parent”.
(Can you imagine how many planes would fall out of the sky every day if the FAA hired only political cronies with no real education or experience? Whose only ‘qualification’ or ‘background’ in aeronautics was that they bought a plane ticket once? If only children, their safety and well-being was as important to our government as Commercial Airliners.)
People without the education and qualifications to hold these top positions are always threatened by those below them who are eminently more qualified by virtue of their education in the field and their experience on the job, as evidenced by Ms. McMullen’s taking pride in being “Tom Sullivan’s Boss’s Boss” and able to obstruct him and prevent him from making any more Mandated Reports, despite the fact that even more children are being raped and abused while she plays CYA. She hasn’t a clue as to what is needed to keep children safe.
She waited 22 months to call a meeting of a handful of the many Mandated Reporters who have filed reports of extreme abuse, sexual abuse of these children. She was in no hurry. And then she arrives only to state that she is essentially concerned with funding issues, and that her department has no capacity to investigate individual cases of abuse… and then Kennerson also, who follows the same script was asking for the individual names on a list of the children who were abused 2 years ago! For what? If she can’t investigate, she is not allowed to have their names. It would be a violation of HIPAA Laws and she should know that.
Twenty-two months is hardly the kind of wait time one would expect as a response to urgent crisis reports of child rapes and rampant abuse. But that is how these agencies operate because they have no one competent enough to run them. And because they lack competency, the willingly accept anything the Casey Foundation presents to fill the vacuum left by their incompetency, and without even the common sense to perceive the gaps and flaws these half-baked programs institute, of course they are mystified as to why the system isn’t working! They cannot even understand that it is NOT working, much less what to do about it.
And those below them, who clearly see that it is not working and why, are told to shut up.
The heads of these agencies, throughout the entire nation, are appointed. They don’t rise up through the ranks, and they don’t have extensive studies and degrees in the field. They rise up on the coat tails of politicians they help get elected.
We are now into the second and third generation of Casey Family Programs that have failed not only the kids, but which have drained funding away from those children and into the Casey Foundation coffers, fattening up their paychecks and giving them more political power and influence as they continue on.
We only have the records, so far, for the ANNIE E. CASEY FOUNDATION.
There is also the Eugene B. Casey Foundation and the Marguerite Casey Foundation.
The financial statement for the ANNIE E. CASEY FOUNDATION for the years 2011 & 2012 show a few interesting facts:
$111+ Million in grants $124+Million in grants
$ 53+ Million invested in UPS $ 56+ Million invested in UPS
Kind of sweet to be able to have enough grant money coming in that you can turn around and reinvest that into your own company’s stocks, isn’t it?
The premise of the Casey Foundation was to be able to help states better deal with Foster Care and children in the system. It’s obvious to me that it is a vehicle by which the Founder of UPS and his family can drain hundreds of millions of tax dollars out of our government programs and reinvest a large chunk of that back into their company.
The promise to states is that they will ‘save money’ by following these practices and procedures that leave children in the most horrific, diabolically evil environments. And, indeed it does as it is less costly, in the short term, to bury a child than to rescue them and provide a safe environment for them. The long-term however, it costs us many times more in that we are all left to deal with the human wreckage, now multiple generations of it, that raise children into adults, into parents themselves, that know nothing except violence, pain, anger, rage and a system wherein the laws against child rape mean nothing, regardless of who reports it, who knows about it, and nothing is done.
Children who have no chance of rescue from such violence do not become contributing, productive members of society. They fill our jails and prisons. They break into our homes and cars, rob our businesses to feed their addictions. They become violent and they become the evil that was done to them.
It costs on average, $167K per year to house an inmate in New York . The cost of housing federal prisoners continues to rise as well: $21K per prisoner in that system, and that is a conservative cost estimate because it does not factor in the maximum security prisons, nor the costs of probation, half-way houses, nor does it factor in the cost of their health care and court costs. Nor does it include the costs of those crimes to our society, in general.
Think about this: The United States incarcerates more of its citizens than any other nation on the planet. “WE’RE NUMBER ONE!.
Who Do We Rely On?
As we continue to fail to even hold accountable those in office, the elected and those incompetent that they appoint, we are increasing the crime rates and the viciousness of crimes and that affects ALL of us.
Do we really want someone at the top of any agency who sees her job as solely shoveling out money and silencing reports of abuse to children?
Do we really need or want some Casey Family Programs, half-baked, unrealistic and without real world foundational principles of learning from the errors contained therein, to continue to be the ones to advise the incompetent appointees? Wouldn’t our tax dollars be better spent elsewhere? Like, on providing good homes for these children? Safety? Refuge? Fixing the Foster Care system that Casey Family and incompetent appointees have been breaking? How about on more law enforcement actually investigating reports of child rape, both on the rez and in a neighborhood near you?
Government seems to think that they can appoint anyone, regardless of how qualified or unqualified they are, to key positions in government such as ACF, because they rely on Foundations such as Casey Families, to institute the policies and practices. No brains required.
Whatever ‘cost savings’ the Policies and Practices of Casey Foundation purports to generate in states where it is implemented blindly, is more than wiped out by the cost of rising crime, social insecurity and the high cost of incarcerating more of our population than any other country in the world… yes, that includes Iraq and Iran and even China.
It’s a failed experiment in cost cutting and ‘family saving’ that has been going on for generations and has been failing more than it has been succeeding. It is the way someone as dense as George Sheldon, when he was head of Florida’s DCF was able to only count less than half of the murdered children in his statistics, listing only 69 of them when there was well over 110-140, and then declare that he was never aware of the depth of the problem.
Casey Family has, these past two years, decided to wean themselves out of the Child Protection racket and promote themselves more and more as the grant writers for other foundations that want to implement their same failed practices. Like a virus, they have now decided to mutate into several different forms and spread even further throughout the system, infecting every level with different names of different foundations, all using the same formulas, and all of them taking government dollars.
Those dollars should be going directly to the services needed for the children without all the political self-congratulatory centipede that keeps adding more and more to itself at the cost of the safety and well-being of children.
Preserving the family at the cost of the child is giving us a society wherein our prison population is out pacing every other nation on the planet, and our crime rates are soaring both in destructiveness and levels of violence and sadism upon the victims.
This is what a failed system looks like. And with those in charge of it unable to see that it is failing, unable to learn from the mistakes that cost children their lives, and seeking only to silence those who are more qualified by education and experience to explain it to them, we can expect only more and worse to come.
If ACF is only about funding all these other agencies and foundations such as Casey Family, then we don’t need the ACF. We don’t need to spend hundreds of billions a dollars a year on an agency who only wants to write checks to other agencies and ignore, even silence anyone in their ranks who dares report that the system is failing and how, and why. All we need is a giant checkbook and one person to write those checks out to whomever wants the cash, much or most of which will go to buying the stock of that founder’s company, or to political payoffs in one form or another anyway.
Let’s not call it Administration for Children & Families. Let’s call it Political Payroll. After all, they have no interest in stemming the tide of corruption, or of being good stewards of the millions that they give out to any agency or organization. Least of all, do they give a flying crap about those kids whose stories appear on those 13 Mandated Reports--- not a single one of which has ever been investigated.
Gee, Joo… *scratching my head* I wonder why the system isn’t working? You had a leadership role in that Foundation, and now you can’t figure out why it isn’t working? How long have you been telling yourself that it was working? Or did you ever care enough to actually look and see?
Completing the “Willful Ignorance” Set is Marilyn Kennerson, head of the Children’s Bureau. Her $11 Billion budget should require she be at least able to read, wouldn’t you think? You already saw the comic sans, misspelled email which her assistant sent to summon Betty Jo to the meeting that was only 22 months late in happening.
Betty Jo sent her and the others an email in which she asks specifically (again) for Kennerson and the others, to explain their statement about the State and the Tribe being solely responsible for the protection of the children on Spirit Lake when it clearly states in the Ominibus Bill signed by Obama, that the Federal Government is responsible for their protection. Betty Jo clearly pointed out that the Omnibus Bill stated that it was FEDERAL Responsibility. Not State. Not Tribal. Federal. Which makes the identical statements from McMullen, Kennerson, Sparks & Chang that it was State & Tribal, a little disconnected from what is the FACT in this case.
Then again, we have seen Kennerson not recognize a ‘fact’ or ‘several facts’ when presented to her, recently, so maybe it is an impairment of some sort--- which is no doubt why she was appointed to the position she was, in charge of more than $11 Billion Budget.
Betty Jo Krenz’s email:
From: Betty Jo Krenz
Date: Tuesday, April 15, 2014 3:36 PM
Cc: Molly McDonald,
"Mcmullen, Marrianne (ACF)" <Marrianne.McMullen@acf.hhs.gov>
Good Afternoon Ladies
You ladies answered my question clearly about the responsibility of the children of spirit Lake being a state and tribal responsibility. I am a bit confused about this as it clearly stated in the bill signed by President Obama that the tribal social services is to answer to the federal government:
Spirit Lake Tribe Social Services: The omnibus includes language authored by Hoeven requiring the Bureau of Indian Affairs to report to the House and Senate committees of jurisdiction on the progress of its efforts and the adequacy of child placement and judicial review by the tribe and the BIA. The Secretary is directed to take all necessary steps to ensure that children at the Spirit Lake Reservation are placed in safe and secure homes.
This clearly states the responsibilities are a federal issue at this time…..
Can somebody please help me understand this.
Thank you for your help.
Betty Jo Krenz
Kennerson was the only one to respond, the others were all away from the office for a couple of weeks. Kennerson is an idiot. That’s all I can really surmise from her response.
From: "Kennerson, Marilyn (ACF)" <email@example.com>
Date: April 18, 2014 at 12:42:37 PM CDT
To: Betty Krenz
Cc: Molly McDonald "Mcmullen, Marrianne (ACF)" <Marrianne.McMullen@acf.hhs.gov>,
Joanne Streifel < "Chang, Joo Yeun(ACF)" <JooYeun.Chang@acf.hhs.gov>
Subject: RE: question
Hello Ms. Krenz (Betty Jo)-
Thanks for your recent email and for taking the time to share your perspective with us on April 9th. Of course, Joo Yeun Chang, Lillian Sparks Robinson, and I all received your email and I will be your point of contact for any future questions you may have.
Please provide me specific information, including name and citation, regarding the bill and additional language you reference in your email. Without full information, it is difficult to respond to your email seeking clarity. I also encourage you to submit your inquiry to the Department of Interior, Bureau of Indian Affairs as they were the federal agency mentioned in your email.
Thanks and I look forward to receiving the requested information.
First she says thank you to Betty Jo for ‘sharing your perspective at the meeting on Wednesday’… does Kennerson not know the difference between an opinion and the bare knuckle facts presented to her? These were not ‘views’, these were facts. Her attempt to diminish the value of what was presented to her and the others is, in my book, insulting and disrespectful on several levels.
She then claims to not understand what Betty Jo is asking and asks her to give her more details ‘for clarity’…
I guess she totally missed the quoted part and the crystal clarity of the straightforward question.
She also directs Betty Jo that she (Kennerson) will be the point person for Betty Jo to contact on this matter… and in the next paragraph tells her that she should direct her inquiries to these other Federal Agencies. (Make up your mind, Kennerson. Are you the “point of contact”? or Do you have no way of sharing information with other Federal Agencies? It can’t be both.
Not that it matters. Betty Jo Krenz is not employed by the ACF or any other Federal Agency and she is free to contact anyone she feels like contacting.
Betty Jo Krenz is above all, straight forward. She does not beat around the bush and she does not couch her questions or answers in vagueness or colorful gibberish.
Apparently, Ms. Kennerson is not able to read or comprehend. I will suggest to Mrs. Krenz that she send her further emails to her written in comic sans and with several key misspellings so that Kennerson will feel right at home.
Falling From The Sky
Maybe if the children who are being raped daily, nightly, hourly, were instead falling from the sky, maybe, just maybe there would be no way to hide all of this under the bureaucratic double-talk, and willful blindness would not pass even casual inspection, and the public at large would be alarmed more and more, and we could force our government to actually investigate the crimes against these children.
Presently, even Timothy Purdon, the USAG in North Dakota, has ignored hundreds upon hundreds of reports of child rapes and ongoing rapes of children on Spirit Lake Rez. He has only investigated one, and that’s because the perpetrator was not from the rez. He has refused to investigate a single Mandated Report. He has lied and said they were all investigated (without interviewing a single Mandated Reporter?) and he called those who filed the reports as liars and their reports as false. And then Baby Laurynn was horrifically murdered. And again, when the house of horrors in Grand Forks was revealed, they too had been in those mandated reports that he claims to have investigated. Either he is lying or he is so incompetent he can’t even tie his own shoes, or he is corrupt. I’m running out of options that suit him.
These children are not ‘falling through the cracks.’ No one is fixing this system. The same broken theories that wrecked it to begin with are still steering it off the cliff. Picture these children as falling from the skies…. Can you see them yet? Is it alarming yet? Is it time we demand that this entire system be investigated, top to bottom and the corruption and incompetence rooted out? Or shall we wait for the next horror story ‘to come out of nowhere’, ‘fall out of the sky’?
You know where to find me.
April 14, 2015
Amateur Hour ---Printer Version (10)
At our home, we watch a lot of history and archeology programs. Old civilizations are dug up, pondered by the better educated guessers in the group and consensus is reached as to how this or that civilization, city, or village was destroyed.
Theories range from drastic climate change (look out folks, we’re in the lane for that one ourselves), to wars, to cataclysms such as volcanoes, earthquakes, floods…
They were once either the greatest power in the region or on the globe, and then, we dig up their remains and try to figure out where they went wrong and how it all collapsed.
I feel it is high time for those history and archeology scholars to add a new ingredient to ponder when it comes to the downfall of great civilizations: Corruption.
Corruption brings us the abusive, the incompetent, the willfully ignorant and the divisive. The more they can get us to fight amongst ourselves, the less we see the damage they are doing with failed policies, corrupt practices, cronyism and worse.
The more I see of how high political offices are appointed, not to the most qualified by virtue of service or education in the field, but rather by political connection or as reward for political services in fund-raising or party support; the more I see our once greater Nation descending into that spiral that precedes every major decline, every ruined society, every failed State.
When you find that the person who has absolute say over any agency, the person at the very top, is in fact the least qualified person in the entire agency, you know your country is in trouble. And when you measure across all the agencies, all the top posts, you find a majority are being run by the least qualified, the least able, you begin to fear for all that is left of what we once were, is being parceled off through corruption, in ways that make no sense, except for the benefit of the most corrupt.
The Ship of State, essentially, brings on more rats than yeomen. And those rats bring on more of their pals, and it becomes impossible for the yeomen, who know their work, to do anything without tripping over and being bitten by the rats that are only there for themselves and their pals.
When the weak, the incompetent and the corrupt outnumber the qualified and those with integrity, we find ourselves with a sinking feeling. We may try to ignore it, as we take on water, and half-assed attempts at bailing are met with ridicule, threats and harassment.
We keep our heads down and we keep on bailing, trying to save this sinking ship. We find it hard to believe that those on board would not be with us in trying to save this sinking ship. When we finally have to face that fact we are left with a decision: Do we give up, jump ship and swim for shore to try and save ourselves? Or do we mutiny, and sound the alarm for all to hear, and point to where the real danger is, and point out why the problems we are trying to solve seem only to be getting worse, while the rat-faced political appointees assure us that all is well and getting better?
The problem becomes: What happens if we point out the corruption, the abuse, the incompetence and the willful ignorance, and nothing is done? What if no one wants to fix this? What becomes of us as a society, a community, a state and a nation?
We have no choice. We are pumping out the bilge as best we can, because there are children on this ship, and we go nowhere as a nation if we cannot make them safe in this one small place, on this one small ship: Spirit Lake Nation Reservation.
If we can’t protect them there, we cannot protect them anywhere. If they are doomed, children throughout this nation are doomed. If it can’t be done here, it won’t be done anywhere bigger, more complex, in cities and towns where you live. That’s a fact.
The sooner we all wake up and face that fact, the sooner we can throw out the bilge and get more qualified crew onboard to right this ship and take us all to safer waters.
There are ways to invite or request someone be present at a conference or meeting you intend to have. You consult with them, advise them of your schedule with as much advance notice as possible so that they too, can plan to attend. This is especially important if the person or persons you are planning to meet with, are key to the issue you plan on discussing or ‘researching’.
Last week, Betty Jo Krenz received an email that is unbelievable in that it was coming from a Federal Agency, The ACF which has Billions of Tax Dollars in their annual budget, and one of the least courteous, most unprofessional requests for her to attend a meeting a mere two days later.
It was more of a summoning, than a request. She was just expected, on extremely short notice, to appear in front of this traveling circus assembled by Marrianne McMullen, consisting of McMullen, Ms. Kennerson, Lillian Sparks and JooYeun Chang (“Call me Joo”).
This email that was sent, not even a formal letter, mind you (Well, there really wasn’t any time because it was such short notice, you see) was written in comic sans font and contained misspellings of McMullen’s name and others.
From: "Gordon, Ronnie (ACF)" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: April 7, 2014 at 2:53:03 PM CDT
To: Betty Jo Krenz
Subject: Interview on Thursday with Associate Commissioner
Hi Betty Jo
You are confirmed to meet with the Associate Commissioner for the Administration for Children Youth and Families (ACYF), Lillian Sparks and Maryann McMillans from Washington, DC and Marilyn Kennerson from Region 8 Child Welfare. This meeting will begin at 11:15 a.m. at the Lakes Region HSC.
If you have any questions you can reply back to this email.
Child Welfare Program Assistant
999 18th Street, Suite 499
Denver, CO 80202
One would think that with all that money in an agency, they would hire someone with basic secretarial skills and who could properly address a request to appear, and spell the name of the agency head properly. Who knows who’s friend’s daughter that is that was given that government job? *shrugs*
Also, unless Betty Jo and Ms. Gordon (I’m assuming it’s a ‘Ms’, but I could be wrong) are personal friends, the proper way to address this would be to use her full name. Right off the bat, flags go up that that office is not professionally run which means that the person who hired this “Assistant” is also out to lunch.
And, speaking of “out to lunch”, notice that it was several hours later when Ms. McMullen also dropped a note to Betty Jo Krenz, after lunch, obviously, that she would be inviting her..
From: "Mcmullen, Marrianne (ACF)" <Marrianne.McMullen@acf.hhs.gov>
Date: April 7, 2014 at 10:51:00 AM CDT
To: “’(“Betty Jo Krenz” <>
Subject: Spirit Lake visit
Hello Betty Jo Krenz,
I just wanted to be sure to let you know that I will be coming to Spirit Lake this week as part of a fact-finding team from ACF. I’ve asked the person managing the scheduling for the trip to please try to get you on our agenda as I am hoping we can have productive conversation about child welfare at Spirit Lake.
The trip will be led by the Children’s Bureau, but I will be accompanying them to help them capture the input we receive and convey it back to our child welfare system training and technical assistance experts here. We are hoping that your experience in the system there will help shed some light on how the tribe can build capacity moving forward.
I look forward to meeting you.
Deputy Assistant Secretary for External Affairs
Administration for Children and Families
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
901 D. St., SW, Washington, DC 20447
Bear in mind, Ms. McMullen had planned this meeting almost a month in advance, so giving Mrs. Krenz the least possible amount of time to arrange to attend and to be prepared, seems to be what she had in mind with this last minute summoning of ‘oh, you should be there’.. kind of request.
None of this disrespect fazed Betty Jo in the least. Trust me, she’s gotten much worse by smarter people than McMullen, and even that doesn’t stop her. You betcha she was there… and with bells on.
Betty Jo also had no intention of being the only part of the team in that room where McMullen and her panel could interrogate or misrepresent what she was saying. She brought with her, Sister Joanne Streifel (30 yrs as a Licensed Social Worker), Molly McDonald (former Tribal Court Judge) and Robin Poor Bear (from the PBS Frontline Documentary: “Kind Hearted Woman”)
….And they all brought their iPhones and recorded the entire meeting.
McMullen introduced herself as having a background in: “Media & Communications, Public Affairs,” and he qualifications in “Child Welfare—as a Foster Mother”.
No education or formal training in Child Welfare. She was a foster mom. That’s it. Why not a “Soccer Mom”?
That meant that everyone sitting on Betty Jo Krenz’s side of the table was far more qualified than Ms. McMullen, who fired up her computer and said: “I will be the official recorder for this meeting.”
To which Betty Jo and the other ladies chuckled, pulled out their phones, set them on “Record” and said: “Us too.”
I listened to the recording of McMullen typing. She types at approximately 64-68 wpm. Given that everyone in that room was speaking at anywhere from 100- 130 WPM, at best, she would have gotten half. No matter, she typed when she felt like it, and not all the way through.
When I heard her say that her qualifications for being the very head of the agency that oversees all, ALL of the Child Welfare in the nation was that she was a Foster Mother, I about fell over. (Man those pumps, Boys! This ship is sinking faster than we realized!)
At one point, McMullen proudly proclaimed that she was “Tom Sullivan’s Boss’s Boss”. Yes, all that power, and no clue as to how to work on an important and serious issue as rampant child rape. The least qualified person in the room, must clearly be the least qualified person at the agency and I have to wonder who in the world thought it was a great idea to appoint her to such a high responsibility position?
She needs to be fired. Or asked to resign, ASAP. Clearly, she is in that position and sees her job as only to stop investigations or, using her ‘Public Affairs, Media & Communications background’ to spin reports of child rape into “Nothing to see here. Problem solved”.
Her contempt for Thomas Sullivan, an man eminently more qualified for the job than she would be in this or any 10 lifetimes, has shown through in their correspondence where she does everything in her power to prevent him from doing his job.
Given that she sees herself as qualified for the position as the head of the ACF from her being a “Foster Mom”, I can only assume that her “Media, Communications & Public Affairs” background stems from watching TV, talking on a telephone and lying to the press. Just a guess.
What was stunning in that meeting, an almost 2 hour recording available here (volume is a bit off so you do better if you have head phones) is how uninformed McMullen, Sparks and Joo seemed to be, on just about every aspect of the issue and the communications over the past 22 months to their offices and agencies.
Did I mention? This is the first time in the 22 months since Thomas Sullivan filed his first Mandated Report, that McMullen has bothered to even try to meet with any of the people who have the information regarding the abuses of the children on the rez.
Who Is Accountable?
McMullen also, along with Sparks and Joo, each stated, when Betty Jo Krenz asked each of them, by name, “Who is ultimately responsible for these kids that I have serious, SERIOUS concerns for?” They each said that it was the State and Tribal Governments, not Federal.
Blow me down with a feather! So, why is she holding that meeting? And why during that meeting, was she asking Betty Jo for a list of names of the children who are being raped and abused, especially since she said her department had no authority to act on their behalf or to investigate? What good would those names be to her? It would clearly be a violation of the HIPAA Laws to give those names out to anyone not in authority to act on the reports.
Clearly, in her position as “Tom Sullivan’s Boss’s Boss” Ms. McMullen remains clueless as to what a Federal Trust is and her responsibility to it. And clearly, by the carbon copy Responses from Kennerson & Sparks, they also, are clueless. No wonder the ship is sinking! The person the appointed as Captain has no clue what ship she is on or how deep into that ship she is!
Now, it remains to be seen how those who work for the State of North Dakota feel about being thrown under that bus!
Further, it seemed that only Joo was asking pertinent questions and seemed to be just that day informed that these complaints, list of names of children in danger, those being raped and abused living with level three sex offenders, all that had been delivered to the BIA and the FBI and to the DOJ…
Joo couldn’t seem to wrap her mind around that. We must give Joo some slack here. She’s new. She’s only been with the agency for the past 6 months so clearly, all of this is brand new to her. No one has, in that time, despite putting her on this committee, panel, whatever it is, informed her of all that has gone before in order to get her up to speed. She seemed genuinely stunned.
I think Joo just got a real look at the ship and sees that the boards are rotting and chewed through by rats, but she has no idea how many rats are on board right now. We’ll see.
The responses were non-responses for the most part. McMullen obviously handed out the scripts in advance:
“Late in 2011 BIA did an audit. Level of documentation was poor… we provided technical assistance…issues were identified—much work has been done… move forward…”
Hard to see ‘work has been done’ when the problems have only gotten worse, and children are still being raped, and the entire time the BIA Strike Team was on the rez supposedly taking over Tribal Social Services to fix things, staff worked from 8 AM until 10 PM every day, shredding documents…
Joo would interject: “We are trying to understand why this system isn’t working…” and there would be chuckles around the table. I guess Joo had no idea that the woman she worked for was the one blocking any and all attempts to make those in positions of authority and responsibility, accountable.
She couldn’t seem to get her head around the fact that the BIA has refused to act on ALL of the reports of children in danger, especially failing to take reports of rapes when the victims are forced to live with or be in contact with their rapists, all of them registered sex-offenders.
I suppose that if she turned around and asked Lillian Sparks, why her agency was not doing its job, she would have gotten some song and dance of ‘technical support’.
Kennerson asked Betty Jo for the names of the children… Again, why? If she had no authority and no intention of helping those kids, why ask Betty Jo to violate HIPAA? It seemed contradictory to her claim that her department had nothing to do with investigations.
Throughout the meeting, every time the Grand Forks Herald Horror Story was brought up, McMullen would dodge the question and change the subject. Betty Jo pointed out that she was called a liar by everyone responsible, including Timothy Purdon, when she had brought up concerns about those very children, who happened to be on the list for the Mandated Reports.
Had Ms Sparks or her mentor and Pal, Mr. Washburn of the BIA done their job, those children would have been removed from that house of horrors more than 2 years ago when Betty Jo first reported it to their attention.
In the beginning, McMullen made it clear that she sees the mission of her agency as “Funding” and providing services related to poverty… I guess she never read her agency’s Mission Statement?
When Betty Jo and Molly asked what happened when some agency or recipient violated the terms of their AMA grants…
“AMA has no regulations that you can violate.” Yeah, you can’t go wrong with that one. Take the money, do what you want with it, ask for more, get more, and never ever worry that you will be held accountable!
What could possibly go wrong with that?
That is key to what is wrong with all these agencies. They have at their helm, men and women who see their only mission as dishing out billions of tax dollars, not accounting for a penny of it, and holding no one accountable if they take the money and hurt children or steal from the program.
There is basically a huge pile of our tax dollars and they have shovels. Wheelbarrows pull up, they shovel in. Next wheelbarrow pulls up, more gets shoveled in. That is how they see their job.
Now, given that McMullen has taken over 22 months to even begin to look at this problem or talk to the key people who would be able to explain it to her (she was busy… there were so many wheelbarrows around election time! *mops sweat off brow*) You might wonder who else was on her agenda to speak to about this important issue.
Well, the very next group of people she had set up meetings with were, among others, Paul Hutchinson and Melissa Brady.
Paul Hutchinson, the man who worked so hard to force the rape victims of one father to be forced to reside with him again, WHILE HE WAS UNDER INVESTIGATION FOR HORRIFIC CHILD RAPE, and who viciously retaliated against the foster mother who dared to go to court to protect those same children… a man so bad at his job that even Spirit Lake, where they are desperate to get anyone to fill that Director’s position so they can qualify for more of the wheelbarrow cash, fired him.
The man who publicly stated on his Face Book page, using his dog’s voice, that he wanted “to piss on my face”… that is the man McMullen wants to spend time with. Yes, I’m sure that with his history of trying to force children to live with their rapists, and her history of shutting down any investigation into the abuses by authorities or agencies, they had a lot in common. I’m sure they had a couple of laughs and maybe cried on one another’s shoulders.
If you want to check out Mr. Hutchinson, here’s his Linked In profile. He claims to still be working for Spirit Lake Tribal Social Services as their Director even though he was canned from that months ago.
Melissa Brady, who also has no qualifications whatsoever to be the Director of Tribal Social Services, especially since she holds another Directorship which she is not qualified for, that of “Victims’ Services” would also be a good match for McMullen and her little clown show.
Clearly, the more unqualified a person is, the more comfortable McMullen and her team are with them. Want to bet that she loaded up that wheelbarrow for Brady before she left?
Calling her trip a “Fact Finding” endeavor is ludicrous. If she ever wanted facts, she could have had them 22 months ago and she never would have obstructed the man who was reporting those facts to her.
When I say that the Ship is full of rats, taking on water, with a crew top heavy on the incompetent and corrupt side, and McMullen is at the helm, you can see by this posting that she’s also steering it as hard as she can, onto the rocks.
That’s my take on this. But the video you really have to watch is Chris Berg’s show where he discusses the meeting with Betty Jo and Molly. Really, you have to watch that show. Berg realizes that his show was used as a vehicle for Tim Purdon to come on, and lie, outright lie, about having investigated those Mandated Reports and found most of them to be false… I thought the way Chris Berg was clutching the papers in his hands, he wanted to shove them down someone’s throat.
But he maintained his professional best throughout the interview. It’s on my Top Five list. Watch it now.
Meanwhile, all hands on deck. Wake up and get on deck. We have got to save this s
hip from the corrupt and the fools that are running it. We have to. There are children aboard and they are OUR Future.
You know where to find me.
PS: I worked from my notes on the almost 2 hour tape of the meeting. I may have gotten some of the names wrong or have to make corrections later. Stay tuned. I’m not perfect. I do my best.
April 7, 2014 --- Printer Version (6)
Exhausting The Illusion
All of the legislators & all of the heads of agencies and departments, including USAG, Timothy Purdon, who are now making hand gestures, serious faces, holding and attending Senate Committee hearings, were informed of the criminal abuses of the children in Spirit Lake Reservation, by way of Mandated Reports--- THIRTEEN of them.
There would be more, many more, but the head of the ACF, Marrianne McMullen, and her lackeys put a stop to any more Mandated Reports of Child Abuse being issued. That’s how the head of the ACF solves the problem: prevent the reports, the problem can then be declared as ‘fixed’.
Timothy Purdon is on the record as stating that ALL of the cases mentioned in those existing Mandated Reports were thoroughly investigated, and most were found to be false.
Sadly, we find out, one horror story at a time, one dead child, horribly abused children, badly beaten, sexually abused children at a time, that all of the reports were true.
He made his statement, on the record, and did so in a way that cast the reporters, including Thomas Sullivan of the ACF, as liars.
But then, one of the children, Baby Laurynn, was horribly murdered. One would think that Mr. Purdon would rethink his position and perhaps actually begin to investigate the crimes, still ongoing at that time, and still ongoing today, to prevent the next horror from hitting the news.
But he didn’t. He refused. He still maintained that those reports were full of lies. Even after one of the children in those reports was murdered. Had he done his job, she would be alive today.
And now comes the Grand Forks Herald story of the gut wrenching series of abuses inflicted on a family of children, since infancy. Another case which Purdon and all the other agencies refused to investigate or assured us that they were investigated and nothing was amiss… now Purdon responds to the paper’s inquiry:
Responding to a request for comment, Tim Purdon, U.S. Attorney for North Dakota, said, “We’ll follow up on that. Make sure those allegations are followed up on. Where allegations lead us to discover evidence to support a charge, a criminal charge, or a prosecution, we obviously move forward.”
He’s going to ‘follow up on that’? On what? The story in the paper? Why didn’t ‘follow up on’ the Mandated Report which these children were only a fraction of the number of children detailed as in danger?
He could have discovered evidence of criminal abuse to these children, and to the others, long before, but he refused to act except to disparage the reputations of those who made the reports to him.
“..we obviously move forward.”?? Seriously? Not when there are 13 Mandated Reports delivered to him, but only after it hits the local papers? Is that really how the USAG functions? Wait until the media uncovers what he should have known long ago, and then ???
“Obviously” he is incapable of moving on anything except to deny the existence of the crimes being committed against these children until they hit the papers either as battered corpses, or in gut wrenching details of horror and abuse.
And while he’s thinking of ways to cover his ass, and the asses of his friends in the system who did everything they could to prevent any further reports of other children who are to this day, being raped, abused, trafficked, beaten and tortured, know that there are still children whom he is actively ignoring, including the 13 yr old who was raped, and the other young girl who is still waiting, now more than 100 days, for that rape investigation to begin. She is being raped by a registered sex offender. I’m sure that Purdon will ‘obviously move forward’ when her battered body shows up. I’m sure he’s hoping it will be a suicide and no one will look any deeper than that.
That on stage illusion that works so well because when someone as high up on the Food Chain, such as the USAG, dismisses claims of crimes against children, we must of course take his word for it over the word of the Social Workers, staff, teachers, and even the Director of ACF District VIII, because, why would he lie?
Maybe we need to look at Mr. Purdon’s connections to some of the key players in Spirit Lake, a little closer. Maybe he is the one that needs to be investigated? Clearly, he knows what his job is--- he just refuses to do it when it comes to Spirit Lake.
And now, like a drunken magician, stumbling across the stage, he thinks he can waive that magic wand of power and authority, and everyone will take his word for it, as they have in the past.
Only problem for the drunken magician is that the curtain is falling down and the props are falling apart, exposing the sloppy truth behind his gestures and reassurances. He wants you to believe what he is saying, not what your own lying eyes have shown you to be the truth.
He wants you to keep on thinking both that the 13 Mandated Reports are full of lies, and that he moves forward anytime there is evidence of a crime. I guess it’s not a crime when it is reported by Social Workers, teachers, staff, and the Director of ACF Region VIII, but only when it actually is reported in gory detail, by the Grand Forks Herald.
Bear in mind, these same reports were also given to Senators Tester and Heitkamp. These same reports are being ignored by them as they try to figure out the complexity of what’s wrong with the Good People of Spirit Lake that they can’t seem to graduate enough students, get enough jobs, and continue to suffer from alcoholism, abuse, violence, addiction and premature deaths from suicide or murder.
It’s not complicated. It’s corruption. They all want to find ways to put more money into these same areas where they have done nothing about the corruption. There is no penalty for corruption. The corrupt become powerful aided by their allies in every level of government.
And now the Senate Committee hearings put on a show and never mention corruption. They do however, discuss more money going into that chaos, and of giving the tribes more autonomy and sovereignty, which roughly translated means: “We’d like to wash our hands of any responsibility for enforcing any laws that relate to the abuses of children, and corruption in communities. We’d like to say that Indians can do whatever they want… knowing full well that the members of all the tribes want law enforcement, they want the corruption off their lands and out of their governments, and they want Justice.
But sovereignty, and autonomy are ways of pretending the problems are no longer ‘problems’ and they can more easily ignore reports of abuse, rape, corruption. Leaving the tribes in the hands of the powerful and the corrupt, with no recourse, no justice, and no connection to the system that is supposed to protect us all.
They want to stop the reports. Period.
Tribes are isolated enough by location, and by stereo typing and by lack of government enforcing laws against rape, corruption, trafficking, abuse… and now the Senate wants to isolate them even more by cutting the cord that would connect them, like the rest of us, to the right to Judicial recourse. And the corrupt will cheer them on.
Russ McDonald had an opportunity at that Senate Hearing to state the problem accurately and ask for investigators to look into the corruption and abuses that are plaguing his tribe. He chose instead to praise the very person who denied him access to Thomas Sullivan, Marrianne McMullen.
Not sure what kind of a deal or bargain she struck with him to make sure he praised her, when in fact he is well aware she is the lynchpin that is preventing investigations that would have prevented the murder of baby Laurynn and the horror story that just came out in the GFH article. Whatever the deal was, it was absolutely the selling of his soul in exchange for a political favor, at the expense of the children, and he knows it. He is the kind of spineless leader that the government wants to hold up as ideal for ‘sovereignty’.
He even admitted in that hearing that years back, 5 children were just dumped on him and his wife and no one ever followed up on it. So, he has known for years that no one in Social Services follows up on any placements. He was not a family member to these children, whom he says he loves and is keeping, nor was he a Foster Parent…
Nor did he ever look to see what the status of these children are, and what funds they were entitled to, and who was getting those payments and where their Social Security monies were going. He is willfully blind, even in his own home. Even for children he supposedly loves.
With everyone willing to allow the corruption to continue without any penalty or even investigation of the corrupt, and with the government looking for more ways to put more money into that without fixing it or even attempting to, we can all expect more horror stories to show up in the news.
There are so many more cases out there, and Thomas Sullivan is forbidden by his superiors to issue any additional Mandated Reports, and Timothy Purdon pretends he is the heroic law enforcement agent, ready to fly at it ‘when there is evidence of a crime,’… which he only considers worth investigating if it shows up in the papers, and never when it shows up as a legally mandated report.
If we don’t demand of our Senators that they act to convene a criminal investigation into the corruption before they shove millions more taxpayer dollars, then we deserve to be robbed. It’s like knowing there is a broken water line and the community going thirsty, but instead of repairing the line, just shoving more water through it, creating even bigger ruptures, and then wondering why the community is still suffering.
By all of these government agents, agencies and the legislators ignoring the Mandated Reports, and pursuing a course of more of the same, we can expect only worse, more horrific, more gut wrenching stories to emerge.
An employee who worked for the tribe recently said that they had been told that all these stories were lies, lies, lies, and she believed the people who told them… they were in fact, the ‘leaders’ of the tribe, backed up by Tim Purdon’s statements, and that when this person began to discover for their self that these reports were true, she was fired.
Recently, children have been shuffled around on the rez. Taken from homes and put in other homes, their records destroyed. A shell game of sorts. So anyone goes looking for the children that used to live here or there or with this or that predator, has now got to go looking there, and over there and with other pedophiles.
I will say this much: The story you read in the GFH about the torture and abuse of that family’s children, is only the tip of the iceberg, for both those children and for all the other children listed in those reports. Hundreds of them.
Demand Purdon do his job or that he be removed. Demand McMullen be removed and replaced by someone who will carry out the mission of ensuring the safety and well-being of children, rather than the comfort and convenience of corrupt political appointees and their friends.
If these children don’t matter to you, then the future does not matter to you. Decades upon decades of these abuses, both on and off the rez, are why we are not safe in our homes, and must lock our cars while we are driving them.
If you are not interested in where violence comes from, be assured of where it is going: Everywhere.
We stop it in this ONE place, this one speck on the map, and we bring down a system of corruption that webs throughout the nation.
Think about it: There must be something about this one place that makes it so important that the corrupt, the rapists be protected that Timothy Purdon has only filed one child rape case in all the going on four years he has been USAG in ND. And that case had a rapist that did not live on or come from that rez.
There must be a reason he refuses to investigate the ongoing rape of a young girl who reported it, and has been waiting more than 100 days for an investigation to begin.
The drunken magician tries to swagger across the stage, but his pants fall down and all the pigeons fly out… If you choose to applaud that man’s act, there is absolutely nothing I, nor anyone can say that will define how withered your own soul is.
Demand more from the media. Demand they pursue the questions and research the responses for contradictions with the actions/inactions we have seen so far.
This is our work to do, all of us. It is clear that those we have elected, and those they have appointed, have no stomach for this, and have been working to protect the corruption and the corrupt to the point that not only are these children being abused and murdered, no one is allowed to file a report about it or try to prevent it.
We want to believe they will act. But we have seen that they refuse to act. We have also been given a tiny peek behind that curtain, and seen the horrors they are concealing with their political double-speak, and all their lies. We need to act now, before that curtain is torn away, completely, in our lives, or the lives of those we know and care for.
“We’ll follow up on that. Make sure those allegations are followed up on. Where allegations lead us to discover evidence to support a charge, a criminal charge, or a prosecution, we obviously move forward.”
No, no he doesn’t. He hasn’t. He has smeared and ridiculed those who made substantiated reports. He’s lying. He’s been lying. His illusion is busted. Everyone can see it and him for what he is.
He just wants you to quit reporting. He wants us all to quit reporting. Hold him accountable. Remove that one protector of abuse and corruption.
We won’t quit.
You know where to find me.
April 4, 2014 ---- Printer Version (10)
Falling Through The Illusion, Pt. 1
“The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it.”
“There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root.” –Henry David Thoreau.
There is a very good reason why the ACF and HHS and HIS do not want Thomas Sullivan of the ACF to participate in any of their ‘teams’ that are going to Spirit Lake to ‘deal with the problems’; he is the one person that best understands the root of the problem, “corruption” and that there are crimes being committed against the children which every level of law enforcement has refused to investigate.
They have ignored every one of the 13 Mandated Reports he has filed, copies of which have also been delivered to both Senator Tester and Senator Heitkamp, both of whom ignored the criminal aspects of child abuse and rape in their latest Committee Hearing, which we’ll go into at a later date. Trust me, it was another production of “Don’t mention corruption or child rape” and “Let’s see how much money we can throw at this,” as if they can clog to toilet of corruption and some of the billions will then spill over and may or may not be used for the programs intended, as the government seeks to both heavily fund the corruption and reduce any obligation of oversight, or audit, under the meme of “Sovereignty”.
I remind everyone that the rez is controlled, as are most of the reservations in Indian Country, by corruption which takes billions of our tax dollars and invests heavily in campaigns for politicians who will then shovel more money into their corruption.
The only way this machine can keep running is if no one mentions the words “Corruption” and “Crimes against Children” in the same committee hearing, much less in the same sentence.
With that, I give you the latest exchange between Marrianne McMullen and Thomas Sullivan, and I ask that you bear in mind, “…the amount of life exchanged… for the illusion all these agencies wish to create. Their self-appreciation and back patting, while never looking at, much less striking at the roots of evil.
They only rake the leaves. Make those leaves into dollars & you get the clearest picture of all.
TO:Thomas F. Sullivan
Regional Administrator, ACF, Denver
From: Mcmullen, Marrianne (ACF) Sent: Monday, March 31, 2014 11:52 AM To: Sullivan, Thomas (ACF) Cc: Murray, James (ACF) Subject: RE: CB team to Spirit Lake
ACF is looking forward to a productive visit to Spirit Lake next week. Joo Chang will lead a team that includes Lillian Sparks, Marilyn Kennerson and me, and it is our goal to provide guidance to the tribe on what steps they need to take to establish a functional child welfare system.
As you know, our jurisdiction here is limited. ACF, through the Children’s Bureau, provides funding and guidance to states, tribes and localities for child welfare agencies. States and Tribes have legal jurisdiction over their courts and agencies and we have no jurisdiction to intervene on individual cases.
We do want to do everything we can within our defined role, however. To that end, we need your assistance to prepare for this visit.
- Provide a detailed list of the steps you have taken as Regional Administrator to assist the tribe to improve their child welfare system. Please include the status of each action and any outcomes of those actions.
- Provide a summary of anything you have learned from other tribes you may have had contact with that faced similar challenges. List any best practices for establishing a strong tribal child welfare system, and any contacts you may have that could be resources for Spirit Lake.
- A list of national and local partners (philanthropies, universities, etc.) who could provide financial, training or technical assistance to Spirit Lake moving forward.
- A list of any other stakeholders or advocates who can be brought to the table to help Spirit Lake protect their children.
Please send this report by noon Eastern time on Friday, April 4 so that it can be included with briefing materials for the team. Please also include your primary point of contact at Spirit Lake, or any other contacts there we should be aware of.
I am sorry you feel that your previous emails regarding Spirit Lake have not been answered; that is not what my records reflect.
After the ACF team visit to Spirit Lake, I will let you know of any need for follow-up on your part.
From: Sullivan, Thomas (ACF) Sent: Friday, March 28, 2014 5:35 PM To: Mcmullen, Marrianne (ACF) Subject: Re: CB team to Spirit Lake
Ms. Mcmullen: Thank you for your email notification about the Childrens Bureau team visit to Spirit Lake on April 9 - 11, 2014. I have some questions concerning this visit: 1. What are the names of those who will be part of this team? 2. Who will be the team leader? 3. What will be the expected outcome of this team's visit to Spirit Lake? 4. What written instructions will be provided to that team? 5. May I receive a copy of those instructions? I have raised many questions about Spirit Lake to you over the last 21 months, all documented in agency email. Few, if any, have been answered. I trust I will not have to add this email to the "unanswered" file. Thomas F. Sullivan Regional Administrator, ACF, Denver
From: Mcmullen, Marrianne (ACF) Sent: Friday, March 28, 2014 04:27 PM To: Sullivan, Thomas (ACF) Subject: CB team to Spirit Lake
I wanted to let you know that the Children’s Bureau is planning a team visit to Spirit Lake April 9-11. The ACF team will talk to various stakeholders, tribal child welfare staff, judges and others. They will use the information gathered to provide clear guidance to the Tribe on what steps need to be taken to establish a successful child welfare agency.
Deputy Assistant Secretary for External Affairs
Administration for Children and Families
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
901 D. St., SW, Washington, DC 20447
From: "Sullivan, Thomas (ACF)" <email@example.com>
Date: April 4, 2014 at 10:45:46 AM CDT
To: "Mcmullen, Marrianne (ACF)" <Marrianne.McMullen@acf.hhs.gov>
Cc: "Greenberg, Mark (ACF)" <Mark.Greenberg@ACF.hhs.gov>, "Chang, Joo Yeun (ACF)" <JooYeun.Chang@acf.hhs.gov>, "Sparks, Lillian (ACF)" <Lillian.Sparks@ACF.hhs.gov>, "Kennerson, Marilyn (ACF)" <firstname.lastname@example.org>, "Murray, James (ACF)" <email@example.com>
Subject: CB team to Spirit Lake
Thank you for your email response to my questions.
You have assembled quite an impressive team to go to Spirit Lake. I am confident that team will be able to put together equally impressive “guidance to the tribe on what steps they need to take to establish a functional child welfare system.”
Two aspects of this effort are of concern to me. First, it is unfortunate that this effort comes almost 22 months after my First Mandated Report was filed on June 14, 2012. Spirit Lake Social Services (TSS) was in disarray then and has not improved its capacity to respond to the child welfare needs of its youngest citizens in the interim despite claims to the contrary by the state, BIA, DOJ and the leadership of ACF.
Second, there is no mention of any effort to evaluate the current condition of those 100+ children I wrote about in that First Report who had been placed in the full-time care and custody of abusers, addicts and rapists. That number has probably more than doubled in the intervening 22 months as more children were removed from their biological homes by TSS or BIA staff. How many of these 200+ children are being tortured in the same manner as the six children removed from their grandmother’s home in Grand Forks and reported in the online edition of the Grand Forks Herald on the evening of March 20, 2014? How many are being raped like that 13 year old little girl who I first brought to your attention more than 100 days ago? That young girl’s claims of rape have still not been investigated by the BIA more than 3 months after this situation was first reported to the Spirit Lake tribal chair and council, the BIA and you. It is my understanding this little girl remains in the same placement available to be raped daily by a Level Three Registered Sex Offender. Why is the statutory rape of this little girl, an enrolled tribal member, allowed to continue by the tribal chair and council?
The delays in removing these children from those abusive homes have been caused by the libel and slander directed at my sources and me. These delays are unconscionable because they required and continue to require all of these Spirit Lake children to remain in the care and custody of abusers and rapists, available to be tortured and/or raped daily. Are there any people at Spirit Lake or in North Dakota with a conscience?
One former senior tribal employee has recently reported to one of my sources that when she started working for the tribe she was told by her supervisor that everything we were reporting were lies. She told my source, “Now, I not only know you weren’t lying, but I also know that all of you have been understating the facts. It is far worse for kids at Spirit Lake than anything you have been saying.”
I understand this former senior tribal employee briefed the tribal chair in these same terms several weeks ago. Since he knew our reports were being characterized as “understatements” and that, “It is far worse for the kids at Spirit Lake than anything (we) have been saying.”, why has he taken no action to help those Spirit Lake children escape the grip of those who abuse and rape them?
The second paragraph of your March 31, 2014 email seems to seek to minimize ACF’s role at Spirit Lake.
ACF’s 2014 Strategic Plan released almost a month ago states on page one, “….we seek to advance a set of key goals:” followed by five statements of goals, which read:
* “Promote economic health and social well-being for individuals, families and communities;
* Promote healthy development and school readiness for children, especially those in low income families;
* Promote safety and well-being of children, youth and families;
* Support underserved and underrepresented populations; and
* Upgrade the capacity of ACF to make a difference for families and communities.”
Minimizing ACF’s role at Spirit Lake within the context of this statement contradicts the entire purpose of ACF’s 2014 Strategic Plan and makes no sense unless you are attempting to avoid addressing the epidemic of child sexual abuse and child/youthful suicide at Spirit Lake. Why would any responsible government leader wish to avoid dealing with such widespread dysfunction that is well-known to have disastrous consequences for children, their families and communities? To do so would effectively negate every one of the “key goals” from ACF’s own 2014 Strategic Plan, at least at Spirit Lake. Is that what you intend?
You ask for some information from me to assist you as you prepare for this visit.
I find this especially ironic since when you were claiming I was misrepresenting the facts at Spirit Lake, that conditions there were not nearly as bad as I claimed and that the BIA and DOJ claims they had investigated every one of my allegations and most were unfounded or false, no one from ACF asked me for any information to corroborate my Reports or provided me with an opportunity to rebut those self-serving claims.
First, you ask for a list of the steps I have taken to assist the tribe to improve their child welfare system.
When I first learned that all tribes in North Dakota were operating their child welfare systems with caseload ratios of as few as 50 – 60 cases per worker to as many as 100 – 120 cases per worker, I met with the child welfare directors from four of the reservations in North Dakota and encouraged them to begin moving closer to a caseload ratio of 20 – 30 cases per worker. They claimed they had been trying to move in that direction but were refused funding every time the subject came up. They realized they were, in many cases, not compliant with state and federal regulations due to inadequate staffing and were quite fearful of the potential financial penalties that might follow if they did not become compliant.
Because of the criminal corruption which continues to dominate the Spirit Lake Child Welfare program, attracting qualified social workers will be next to impossible. Until the leadership of Spirit Lake convinces the public that their CW program is operating and will continue to operate with integrity and transparency, social worker recruitment will be extremely difficult. Only by prosecuting all of those who are abusing, neglecting and raping Spirit Lake children will the public understand that Spirit Lake CW program is no longer controlled by the criminally corrupt. Until that image is implanted in the public perception of Spirit Lake, TSS and BIA will be forced to attempt to address these significant issues with few, if any, qualified social work staff.
I regularly met with the leadership of the ND Department of Human Resources to encourage them to increase their support for their tribal child welfare programs. While these meetings were friendly, the Department was unwilling to increase the money made available to the tribes for any purpose. In late 2010 I met with the Spirit Lake Tribal council members, pointed out the problem with inadequate funding for their child welfare operations and encouraged them to lead an effort to increase tribal funding for their CW operations. They took no action that I am aware of and elections soon replaced the tribal Chair with Mr. Yankton.
In 2008 Spirit Lake’s director of social services told me he had 46 cases of reported, investigated and confirmed child sexual abuse that had been referred to the US Attorney. He said “None are being investigated and none are being prosecuted.” I encouraged him that, as difficult as it was, he should keep referring confirmed cases to the US Attorney for prosecution. I understand he did but there was no action from that US Attorney or his successor to correct this failure to investigate and prosecute serious crimes..
I have filed 13 Mandated Reports, many of which dealt with the inadequate response of law enforcement to crime on Spirit Lake. I would have filed many more if Acting Assistant Secretary Sheldon had not illegally prohibited me from doing so and if Acting Assistant Secretary Greenberg had not, by his silence, apparently endorsed Mr. Sheldon’s actions.
I have reached out to partner with non-governmental entities in the development and presentation of educational programs focused on the recognition of, prevention of and rehabilitation from child abuse in Indian Country. These programs have been targeted to child welfare staff working on reservations. The National Center for the Prosecution of Child Abuse (NCPCA) has been especially generous with their time and resources. They have already provided or will be providing, at no cost to either ACF or DHHS, multi-day training sessions on this subject matter in the following Indian Country locations all across this country: Casper, WY; Browning, MT; Aberdeen, SD; Nampa, ID; Albuquerque, NM; Tulalip, WA; Santa Fe, NM; Pojoague, NM; Yankton, SD; Houghton, MI; and Muscatine, IA. Of the 11 locations identified where presentations will be made, only four are in Region 8, less than 40% of these sessions. While concerned about conditions in Region 8, my efforts have also been focused on the larger community in need of training. Those who have participated in these sessions have been very complimentary about their skill development following their participation in these sessions.
Before limitations were placed on my ability to address issues like the twin epidemics of child sexual abuse and child/youthful suicide in Indian Country by the leadership of ACF, I spoke frequently to groups in North Dakota, in the other states in this region and all around this country about these issues. In fact, until I first spoke about these issues in 2006, no one had ever dared mention the subject publicly. Convinced the silence protected the predators and harmed children, I decided to make this an issue whenever I could. American Indian audiences were initially put off by my frankness but as they understood my efforts were focused not on stigmatizing them but on finding ways to address these epidemics, bringing resources to begin correcting this situation and bringing healing to their children, I began to receive more invitations to speak on these topics.
Since those limitations were placed on me requiring me to get clearance from ACF leadership for any speech I wished to give and since that clearance always involved censorship, removing all substance from my proposed speeches, I have refused to accept speaking engagements where I could not speak honestly about conditions in Indian Country.
Second, you ask me to provide a summary of anything I have learned “from other tribes…. that faced similar challenges….List any best practices for establishing a strong child welfare system and any contacts I have that could be resources for……Spirit Lake”
That is a mouthful and would take essentially a Doctoral dissertation to answer completely. Unfortunately, I do not have time to do that if I am to meet your deadline. I plan, however, at a later date and on my own time to write several books.
Every reservation I have been on, and I have been on most in this region as well as several others outside of this region, are characterized by crushing poverty, many times higher than the rate for the general population. Unemployment levels for generations have been and continue to run at levels not seen in the majority community even during the Great Depression. Alcohol and drug use and abuse are rampant. This abuse is so prevalent that many reservation residents around the Bakken formation cannot qualify for oil field employment because they cannot pass pre-employment drug and alcohol screening. Law enforcement is, on most reservations, non-existent with few officers, little training and little or no professionalism. Domestic violence and rape are rampant. Because children are placed in foster homes of uncertain safety, many children removed from their biological parents when they were drunk, have been placed in homes where they are raped daily, not just at Spirit Lake but on every reservation in this country. What do rapists have to fear when there is no effective law enforcement? Many of these sexually abused children, seeing no hope to escape this horrific abuse realizing the adults who are supposed to protect them will not, choose to end their own lives. On every reservation service needs are high and resources available to respond to those needs are limited.
I am not aware of any “best practices for establishing a strong child welfare system”. I am confident Ms. Kennerson and the leadership of the Children’s Bureau are fully aware of such “best practices” if any are in place. Child safety should be emphasized in every decision made in any child welfare system. Nearly three year old Laurynn Whiteshield died at the hands of an abusive, step grandmother whose history of abuse of her own children was well-known to the BIA caseworkers who placed Laurynn and her twin sister in that home. I understand that another young man died in that same home less than two weeks ago. The step grandmother is reported to be in prison serving a lengthy sentence. Who is responsible for this young man’s death?
Third, you ask for “a list of national and local partners….who could provide financial, training or technical assistance to Spirit Lake moving forward”.
May I suggest all of the members of your team read my 13 Mandated Reports. If you had, you would understand that on pages 5 and 6 of my First Mandated Report, filed on June 14, 2012, at items D – H there is a list of some of those organizations and my suggestions on how they might be used to begin addressing the issues at Spirit Lake.
The former Executive Director of the National Center for the Prosecution of Child Abuse, Ms. Suzanna Tiapula, should also be involved in any effort to address the criminal corruption at Spirit Lake.
Fourth, you ask for a “list of stakeholders or advocates who can be brought to the table to help Spirit Lake protect their children.”
On January 20, 2014 I provided Ms. Kennerson, by email, with detailed contact information for my primary sources at Spirit Lake. I did so at her request and with the understanding she would be contacting some or all of them during her trip to Spirit Lake scheduled to take place before the end of January. In speaking with my sources, none have been contacted by her. I assume Ms. Kennerson still has that email and can make this information available to you.
Whether my sources will be willing to speak with any of you remains to be seen after the disrespectful manner you treated one of them on a telephone call two weeks ago. That was bad enough but then, in a subsequent email, you lied not only about what you said and did but also about what my source said and did during that telephone call.
It would be well for you to consider the words of Marvin Bower, Managing Partner at McKinsey & Company for almost twenty years who, in the ‘Will to Lead’ wrote, “Leadership scholars are virtually unanimous in putting trustworthiness at the top of the list of qualities required by any leader. Trustworthiness is integrity in action….Integrity is honesty carried…….into action so that the person is completely honest. That kind of integrity I put above all else as an essential of leadership.”
I do not “…feel that (my) previous emails regarding Spirit Lake have not been answered”. I know it for a fact. In a later email I will provide chapter and verse on each of those unanswered emails.
Now you can see, as can we all, where the money goes. It goes into creating power players like McMullen whose only interest is in preserving the corruption and protecting the other agencies that also partake in that corruption.
Our Tax Dollars are supposed to go to benefit and improve the lives of all of us. Not become the life blood of political power players. These policies and moves which explicitly protect the corrupt and the child rapists, and the child traffickers, affecting the lives of millions of children, are precisely what creates the level of violence in our society and our nation, driving us to mistrust one another at a glance, and lock ourselves in our homes, being sure to arm our alarm systems and bar our windows before we go to sleep.
These policies affect millions of children. Is that the “amount of life” we are willing to exchange so that the politically connected power players can become even more powerful? Is that the amount of life we are willing to pay just so that those who rape children, and those who refuse to prosecute them, can put on their Senate Committee shows and pat themselves on the back for funding more language and culture programs?
Are we to accept child rape on the rez and horrific abuses of children throughout the system as if there is nothing that can be done about it? Or will we insist that this be dragged out into the light, the roots exposed and we ALL strike at them and change our own future as a society and a nation and make it less fearful, more secure for all of us?
Crimes are being committed. We need to demand investigations, not dog and pony shows. The crimes being committed against these children today will affect all of us as those who survive, become angry, violent, addicted and abusive adults themselves. We can stop this. We stop it on the rez, and we stop it everywhere. This is where it began and this is where the roots are the strongest but the most vulnerable because we have, for more than two years now, been shining a light on them.
You know where to find me.