Senator Berta Gardner

December 12, 2015

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Serving Midtown, Spenard, and UMed

716 W. 4th Ave Suite 411.
Anchorage, AK 99501
 
Phone: 907-269-0174
Call Me: 1-800-331-4930

Sen.Berta.Gardner@akleg.gov
alaskasenatedems.com/gardner
facebook.com/BertaGardner

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Governor Bill Walker
Anchorage Office
550 W. 7th Ave, Ste 1700
Anchorage, AK 99501
(907) 269-7450
Gov.alaska.gov
 

Lt. Governor Byron Mallot
Anchorage Office
550 W. 7th Ave, Ste 1700
Anchorage, AK 99501
(907) 269-7460
LtGov.alaska.gov

The Alaska Safe Children’s Act Task Force

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Senator Gardner speaking at the Alaska Safe Children’s Act Task Force Meeting in October.
Senator Gardner speaking at the Alaska Safe Children’s Act Task Force Meeting in October.

The Alaska Safe Children's Act Task Force was created by the same legislation which created "Erin's Law" and "Bree's Law" in Alaska.  Erin's Law requires schools to teach children, in an age appropriate way, how to recognize, avoid, and seek help for child sexual abuse.  Bree's Law requires schools to teach students about dating violence.

A slate of other mandatory teacher trainings is already in place and schools have expressed concerns about the increasing cost burden of all these trainings. The legislation addressed those concerns by putting together the Task Force. Its goal is to vet and recommend training materials and curricula relating to child sex abuse, teen dating violence, suicide prevention, alcohol abuse, and the impact of fetal alcohol exposure.  Multiple topics can be addressed in one package.

The ten-member task force, chaired by Trevor Storrs, Executive Director of the Alaska Children's Trust, includes four legislators, as well as experts in education, suicide prevention, substance abuse, and domestic violence.  While there are no teachers on the task force, we expect to take testimony not only from teachers, but others such as counselors, or nurses who have used some of the curricula.

We are looking for effective, affordable curricula which is appropriate for the ages of students, and would work well in Alaskan classrooms.  Many schools are already doing this work and are able to help us.  By June 30, we will make our recommendations, and plan to make the information available to school districts through the Department of Education and their website.

We've been meeting since October.  All meetings are published and open to the public.  At some point there will be an opportunity for public testimony.  Our next meeting is Monday, December 14, 2015, from 10 am – 4 pm at the Department of Education & Early Development, State Board Room in the Goldbelt Building, 810 W. 10th Street, Juneau, Alaska. 

To teleconference, please dial 1-844-586-9085 (toll free).

More information about our work is available here:

www.livebinders.com/play/play?present=true&id=1837571#anchor

As always, please contact my office if you have any questions.

I’m Berta and I’m still listening,

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact my office.

signed: Berta


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