Bucks Conference on Crimes Against Children draws 300 professionals

L-R: Leslie Slingsby, Rob Loughery, Michelle Laucella, Dave Heckler, Mike Fitzpatrick. Credit: Anne Biggs
L-R: Leslie Slingsby, Rob Loughery, Michelle Laucella, Dave Heckler, Mike Fitzpatrick. Credit: Anne Biggs
More than 300 professionals in the field of child abuse investigation, treatment and prevention participated in the 3rd Annual Bucks County Conference on Crimes Against Children, a day-long event held Tuesday, March 18, at Bucks County Community College and hosted by the Bucks County Children’s Advocacy Center.

The goal of the conference is to provide opportunities to network with other professionals working in the field, deliver current information on prevention, treatment and investigative techniques and enhance attendees’ understanding of child abuse dynamics.

The morning’s keynote speaker was Julie Brand, M.S., an accomplished mental health professional and experienced public speaker. Through Caper Consulting, she offers workshops to human services and mental health professionals throughout the country. Julie holds a Master's degree in Counseling and enjoyed a distinguished 25-year career as a school counselor. Newly retired, she now uses her perspective as both an experienced counselor and a resilient survivor of maternal incest to talk and to write about mother-daughter sexual abuse. She combines research, professional insights and her personal experiences to create unique and engaging programs.

Ms. Brand's dynamic workshops empower audiences to recognize victims of maternal sexual abuse, to help them to survive their trauma and to support them in becoming resilient, healthy survivors.

The event kicked off with welcoming words from Congressman Mike Fitzpatrick (PA-8) followed by Bucks County Commissioner Rob Loughery, who presented the Bucks County Children’s Advocacy Center’s Outstanding Service Award to Michelle Laucella, assistant district attorney and tireless advocate for children’s rights and protecting children who are victims of abuse.

Conference sponsors included Bucks County Commissioners, Bucks County Children and Youth Social Services Agency, Archdiocese of Philadelphia-Office for Child and Youth Protection, Foundations Behavioral Health, Horsham Clinic and Northeast Regional Children’s Advocacy Centers, as well as Bucks County Community College.


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