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Children’s Rights Litigation

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Most of us are familiar with the stereotype of the burned out lawyer who drags herself to work in the morning, makes cynical comments throughout the day, no longer provides her best service to her clients, and goes home bored and uninspired. You may wonder why someone so uncaring ever became a child advocate in the first place, or how she lost her spark. And you know this could never happen to you. Right?

Wrong, according to a panel of experts convened by the ABA Section of Litigation’s Children’s Rights Litigation Committee in a teleconference examining the phenomenon recently termed “compassion fatigue.” The teleconference, “Addressing Compassion Fatigue: An Ethical Mandate,” was moderated by Trenny Stovall, Esq., director of the DeKalb County Child Advocacy Center in Decatur, Georgia, and featured:

• Alexandra Dolan, MSS, LSW, from the Support Center for Child Advocates in Philadelphia;

• Josh Spitalnick, PhD, ABPP, an adjunct assistant professor in psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Emory University in Atlanta;

• Françoise Mathieu, M.Ed., CCC., the coexecutive director of TEND in Ontario; and

• Danielle Lynch, Esq., the supervising attorney in the DeKalb County Child Advocacy Center in Decatur.

This article provides a brief overview of the teleconference as well as the materials.


©2016. Published in Children's Rights Litigation, Vol. 18, No. 2, Winter 2016, by the American Bar Association. Reproduced with permission. All rights reserved. This information or any portion thereof may not be copied or disseminated in any form or by any means or stored in an electronic database or retrieval system without the express written consent of the American Bar Association or the copyright holder.



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