News Article

Ribbons Symobolize Child Abuse Victims at Wynona's House

By Monica Miller, WBGO News
Newark. June 18, 2013

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Blue ribbons have popped up on the corner of Washington Street and Raymond Boulevard in Newark.

The parking lot fence around the child advocacy center Wynona’s House has dozens of little bows tied to it. Its executive director Evelyn Mejil says the tradition started by a Virginia grandmother whose grandson died from injuries caused by his parents.

“She tied a blue ribbon on the antenna of her car  and she drove around and she wanted people to ask her what that ribbon was all about so she could explain what child abuse and neglect is doing to our children.”

Dr. John Brennan from Beth Israel Hospital says he remembers treating a young patient who suffered physical and sexual abuse.

“When you’ve seen for the first time, it takes away your heart because you’ve taken away someone’s childhood and then they get into an entire cycle that doesn’t work.”

Acting Essex County Prosecutor Carolyn Murray says summer is a time when children can become vulnerable.

What I would love to do is close the summer and tell you we didn’t have one  criminal child abuse case  this summer. That would be a victory.”

To report suspected abuse, call 911 or (877) NJ ABUSE.

NPR

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