Monday, March 27, 2023


Mobilizing Georgia voters in a non-election year is crucial for voting rights groups, Philadelphians over 50 will play a major role in the mayoral primary, and the EPA is finalizing a new air quality rule.


Michigan becomes the first state in decades to repeal a "right to work" law, death penalty opponents say President Biden is not keeping campaign promises to halt federal executions, and more states move to weaken child labor protection laws.


Finding childcare is a struggle everywhere, prompting North Carolina's Transylvania County to try a new approach. Maine is slowly building-out broadband access, but disagreements remain over whether local versus national companies should get the contracts, and specialty apps like "Farmers Dating" help those in small communities connect online.

Hurricane Sandy Nightmare Still Lingers for Some Children


Wednesday, May 8, 2013   

HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. - Professionals offering free mental-health counseling to young victims of Hurricane Sandy say they're still dealing with children badly shaken by the "super storm."

Dr. Robert Motta, director of the Child and Family Trauma Institute at Hofstra University, estimates that about 10 young storm victims have received free counseling there. It isn't so much the wind, waves or forced dislocation that has traumatized the children he sees, he said; it's how they take their emotional cues from their parents.

"Their stability, their world, is shaken when they see the parents shaken, when they see the parents unable to cope," he said. "Is that associated with the wind and the rain? Absolutely. But if their parents were really cool about it, I guarantee you the children would be far, far less traumatized."

Another source of free post-Sandy counseling for children, Family Service League, says it has treated about 10 children as well. Robyn Berger-Gaston, the league's division director for youth, senior and intergenerational services, said Family Service League has seen a recent increase in requests more than six months after Sandy.

"Their parents or guardians will contact us and tell us that their child can't sleep, they may be having nightmares, that they're preoccupied with it every time it rains," she said.

Berger-Gaston said the situation isn't helped by the fact that many families are experiencing delays in getting the money to rebuild homes.

"We know that in most of these cases, what helps these kids and adults most is being able to return to their normal routine," she said. "So, if that's disturbed in some way, that could make the recovery more challenging."

Motta said the arrival of summer weather should also help, which will bring children and families back to beaches that are much less threatening than last October.

"It's really that you're now associating the water, the sun, the waves, the sand, et cetera, with something pleasant," he said, "whereas before, you were associating it with your parents freaking out and water coming into your living room."

Both say they're not seeing a tapering off yet in the number of children needing counseling.

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