Dear NTM – a request

7/31/09 — Nothing has been done for Vicky, Kari, Bonnie, Joie, Miriam, Miriam, Naomi or anyone else who has had contact with us through this blog, including MKs from other schools around the world. Abusers named here are still serving with NTM. Unbelievable. Still have not received the list we were promised, and the CPC is not answering our emails.

*Update 7/22/09 – As of today, we still have not received the list we requested.
–  The onus is on Vicky to decide if P’s should be disciplined or not. This is something NTM should handle and leave the victim out of it. She has informed them of the actions she wants taken, and has gotten no response.
–  When Victoria called them today, requesting regular updates on their investigation, she was told by the CPC that they weren’t aware that we wanted updates.  We have made it very clear that we want updates.  In fact, after meeting with them for 19 hours in May, we were promised by them that they would send us regular updates.
– Most of the victims have not been contacted by NTM about their allegations.  We have personally been told by the CPC that they can’t communicate with us because of our blog.   The Senegal Field Committee is also refusing to communicate with us because of the blog.
–  No one has followed up with us about conducting any third party investigation.
– NTM has not reimbursed past counseling charges for most of us.
–  Any communication that we have received from NTM since starting this site has been posted to the site.
In fact, the only things that we have not posted to this blog are a very few comments that were calling NTM “maggots” and saying that “NTM can burn in hell”. We choose to distance ourselves from such comments as they do not reflect our heart and the heart behind this blog.

Edit 7/9/09 – Aside from someone in Senegal working on making up (from old yearbooks) the list we requested, we have not heard any response from NTM since our last update – specifically, the EB.  Our emails are getting no reply.  It seems that things are  being left up to us once again.  And it is clear that NTM is not following their own manual.  Victoria’s abuser should have already been confronted, as their own manual dictates.  It seems (from a phone call) that NTM is asking Vicky to confront her own abuser.  This is not acceptable.
We have been hearing from more people behind the scenes, who are also not being cared for by NTM.
Dear readers of this blog – if you feel strongly about this, please post here – that we will not accept being ignored for one more day. -bonnie

In light of your renewed commitment to transparency we, the collective MKs are requesting a list of all MKs and all dormparents/teachers who were closely involved with Fanda from 1988 until the school closed in 1997. We request this be emailed to ntmabuse@gmail.com by COB 7/7/09 at the latest.

Edit 7/6/09- We have heard from NTM that they are working on this list and will be sending it to us shortly. Thank you.


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21 Responses to Dear NTM – a request

  1. Denise Amstutz K. says:

    Hey guys, thanks for sticking with this and for the blog. Had it not been for your blog and stories Daniela and I would have completely been overlooked and not thought of at all.

  2. Vicky Frayne says:

    No names, no blog sharing yet. Till there is a response from them.

  3. Vicky Frayne says:

    As of 9:44am on Saturday, August 1, 2009 the story of our abuse suffered while being part of NTM has now been sent to SEVERAL major press organizations for their consideration to print in Canada and the United States.

  4. Thai Guy says:

    “We have personally been told by the CPC that they can’t communicate with us because of our blog. The Senegal Field Committee is also refusing to communicate with us because of the blog.”

    Of course they would say that; they don’t want the bad PR. Remember, they didn’t communicate with you BEFORE the blog, either.

    Believe me, you keep this up, and they will talk. You take down the blog, and you are right back where you started.

    Shame on NTM. They should have done something about this years ago.

  5. Anonymous II says:

    Shary: Yes they can, and it is best to do so in the state where the headquarters are located. This is very tricky as child welfare is usually a local, and not a federal matter. Since this is an issue of a national/international umbrella agency breaking the law by essentially harboring a sex offender, if criminal action is taken, it would likely end up going through the Department of Justice at the Federal Level.

    This is very similar to what the Catholic Church did, and would likely be prosecuted similarly. Since what happened within the Catholic Church was in multiple local dioceses, but “hidden” or “investigated/dealt with internally” by a national organization, the investigation was bumped to the federal level. I am sure that a conservative evangelical organization is not thrilled with that statement, or being compared to the Catholic Church, but the series of events are the same. IE- multiple alleged victims, multiple alleged abusers, over time, covered up, ‘dealt with,” not reported to law enforcement, and moved elsewhere in the organization.

    Just by way of reference for anyone who begins to research the Catholic Church cases for similarities… many of those cases could not see criminal charges (just civil: ie- law suits) because of a statute of limitations. (the crime was so old it could not be prosecuted). That varies by state.

    The difference with NTM, is that these were international crimes that occurred overseas. Our US laws for sex crimes abroad have no statute of limitations. Therefore, technically speaking the Dept. of Justice can prosecute a criminal case against NTM for negligence, not following mandated reporter laws by choosing to not report it, and being party to covering up criminal action they knew was occurring (think what happens to politicians who know of white collar crime for instance and refuse to report it.. they get prosecuted too.. just because they didn’t do it, they are still criminally culpable). The Dept. of Justice can then prosecute each individual perpetrator, and the victims can sue for damages, particularly uncompensated mental health bills for the families, and potentially even loss of income for the parents who had to leave mid-missionary career to protect their kids from an organization who choose to do nothing.

    What I would recommend is to contact your local law enforcement (start with police instead of child welfare, they tend to move faster and you can directly call the special victims unit). If you know one of the alleged abusers has current contact with children, report it to Child welfare where they live. You can do so anonymously, and are not required to give your name in many states.. it is also illegal for them to tell anyone who reported it. Since these abusers were never reported or prosecuted, they now have free reign to live anywhere or take any job with any kids or God forbid! another ministry! This is exactly why the law prosecutes negligent organizations… Because then justice does not happen, and other kids are at risk.

  6. Shary Hauber says:

    Anon II can a “victim” report the abuser directly to authorities? If possible should it be done in the state where NTM has their headquarthers, or the state where the abuser is living now?
    Also should the “victim” report that the mission has failed to anything since the report was given to them?

    Keep up the courage, you are fighting for many besides yourselves. Your own children will be helped.

  7. Joel C. says:

    Wow! Those are some really good points. Thanks for sharing that info Anon. II.

  8. Anonymous II says:

    I am writing this as a Christian social worker with many years of experience in child welfare cases both within secular institutions, churches, and faith-based organizations. I say that by way of reference to what I am stating below:

    I do not understand what the “CPC” is that NTM is utilizing to conduct these types of internal investigations. According to child welfare laws, IN EVERY STATE IN THE US, it is NEVER the job of the agency or organization to do any sort of internal investigation with regards to sexual abuse, physical abuse, or neglect. If there is even a hint of abuse, the agency is BOUND BY LAW to report it immediately to the authorities to investigate. The only conversation that should ever take place is them initially hearing of the abuse. Whether or not they think it happened is completely irrelevant. Whether or not the perpetrator went on to receive counseling is irrelevant. Whether or not the child welfare office is run by Christians is irrelevant. The only relevant item is that someone made an allegation of abuse (in this case, multiple people did), and it needs to be reported to the authorities by NTM, according to the law.

    In many states, NTM can now be held liable under criminal charges if they do not report the matter to the child welfare office. As an agency in contact with children, they are known as “mandated reporters,” meaning they are mandated by law to report any suspicion of abuse, and can face literal jail time if they do not do so. Needless to say, the penalties are far more severe if they refuse to report an alleged abuser to the authorities and that person re-offends. They will then be held legally culpable for the original abuse, plus the second one. This is not conjecture, I have personally been involved with cases of church leaders facing prosecution because they chose to handle something internally that they had no business, legally, ethically, or experientially handling. This is not a matter of a board vote on whether or not they should pursue legal action, that is against the law. Similarly, it is never the decision of a local elder board whether or not to pursue reporting an alleged crime.. they too, are bound by law to do so.

    It is unethical and in some states ILLEGAL for the organization to request the “alleged victim” (I use alleged as a legal term here, not as an indication of disbelieving what these MK’s have said) take it upon themselves to contact child welfare on their own. It is also unethical to provide counseling through their own staff members or associates.

    At one point on this blog, I read a comment stating that NTM’s lawyer said that they could not pursue legal action because the crime happened overseas. This is woefully incorrect. 1. They still have an obligation to report it to child welfare because the alleged perpetrator could have current contact with children. The mandated reporter status still applies to oversease cases. 2. Under new anti-trafficking laws, the US can now (and has 25 times since 2003), prosecute it’s citizens in US court for sexual crimes (including child molestation, which is what this is), that occurred overseas. 3. There is no statue of limitations on the allegations. This means, that even though this happened several years ago, the perpetrators can still be prosecuted now. 4. Don’t even get me started about the illegality of having someone accused of abuse still working for NTM or associated with them in any capacity. That is beyond reason.

    Look no further than the Catholic Church for an example of how the law and the public respond when an organization tries to sweep something under the rug, skirt the law, and deal with something internally that is a crime punishable by law.

  9. Joel C. says:

    I’m saddened by NTM’s lack of response.

  10. Kristi says:

    NTM, it should seem that the longer this request from the collective MKs goes unanswered, the larger your problems will grow.

  11. Bonnie says:

    *Update: we still do not have these records.

  12. Shary Hauber says:

    If Christian can only deal with sin when it is brought to their attention in a legal manner then the church is doomed! Jesus had very strong words to say to those who did things like tithing spices and abusing widows and orphans. This is the same kind of situation. Leaders of a missions bragging about all the souls they have saved and abusing children. If you are one of these mission leaders do you think those Jesus was talking to went to heaven, if you don’t you will probably land where they are.
    I went to Mamou I know what these MKs are talking about. This not only happens on the mission field but in our churches. If there is not a change in dealing with sin as sin in our churches and missions God will spit us out of His mouth.

  13. Melissa says:

    I definatly believe that NTM needs to take responsibility and resolve this!

  14. bonnie says:

    I was told (by the people making the list for us) that the list is being put together using old yearbooks. Just saying, the information is in yearbooks that anyone could have. There is not an issue of privacy in this situation.

  15. M.Bacchie says:

    Kari,

    I believe that I do understand quite well. I am not trying to be difficult–I am just trying to point out that, from my perspective, this kind of information may not be the easisest for NTM to provide, legally, to be in compliance with their privacy policies, etc.

    I will leave it at that.

    Good luck!

  16. Kari says:

    Yes, this is public documentation, and there should be no issues with NTM supplying it. They already supplied dorm lists of everyone who was at Fanda during Brooks and Gates’ years, now we need them for the following years as well. This is information found in any yearbook, it’s hardly top secret.

  17. M.Bacchie says:

    But the names/information of everybody else (other than the possible victims) were not public documentation.

    Usually this kind of requests are made with a court behind it, therefore NTM would have to comply, and would be in the clear for their privacy policies.

    Since this is not a court order, this could be a violation of NTM’s privacy policies for it’s members.

    Let’s be clear, I am not covering for NTM. I am just trying to be realistic here.

  18. Bonnie says:

    NTM, I requested these files from the EB days ago, and have gotten no response.
    Please don’t show us that your words about “transparency” was just another thing to tell us to make us go away.

  19. Vicky Frayne says:

    Privacy issues?? But the names of the possible victims of abuse were public documentation. I don’t get that.

  20. Kari says:

    not really, these records should already be compiled and easily accessible.

  21. M.Bacchie says:

    Though I applaud your request for more info, wow, that is alot of information to gather and send in only 2 business days!

    Also, this may or may not even be legal for NTM to do–Privacy issues of it’s members, etc.

    Just some thoughts.

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