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Breaking Code Silence

Incorporation in the State of Oregon

This project will officially form an organization that aims to end institutional child abuse in the United States and abroad.

Posted February 2, 2021

Background & Context

Breaking Code Silence was founded by and is comprised of survivors of institutional abuse. It was originally a social media campaign promoted within existing groups of survivors. It has since become a movement that is broad reaching, including being promoted recently by Paris Hilton in her autobiographical Youtube documentary "This is Paris". All members have a passion and deep understanding of the "Troubled Teen" industry. We all have a vested interest in making sure that survivors are heard as well as that future generations of children are not damaged by this industry. All members of Breaking Code Silence also have various skills, educational and professional achievements, and have dedicated a large portion of their adult lives to advocacy for youth rights and public awareness. It is time to take our passion project to the next level and formalize to ensure that our strategy is organized, measurable and sustainable.

Immediate Problem

Breaking Code Silence is currently fiscally sponsored by the National Youth Rights Association. We have not been marketing for donations, nor have we accessed any funds because we want to have proper infrastructure and reporting processes in place prior to directly accepting donations. We have the majority of the work done in terms of organizational structure, bylaws and understanding of business practices and compliance laws. However, we would like legal assistance to review and advise on potential novice mistakes we have made.

Work & Deliverables

We need a lawyer to review our current documents, give us advice on 501c(3) vs 501c(4) limitations or advantages, and general direction. We can handle filing all of the necessary paperwork, we generally just need someone much more knowledgeable to mitigate potential problems before they are officially submitted.

This project is complete!

This project has been completed thanks to the efforts of our volunteers.

Visit the Project Directory to check out other projects that still need your help!

Additional Information

  • Time Commitment: 6-10 hours
  • Training Provided: No
  • Site-Preference: Remote
  • Open to Law Students: No
  • Additional Location Details: Email, Zoom, and/or phone calls
  • Bar License(s) required: Oregon
  • Required Languages: None
  • Mentoring Provided: No
  • Supervision Provided: Yes
Breaking Code Silence

Breaking Code Silence was originally founded as a social media campaign run and promoted by a group of survivors of the "Troubled Teen" industry. The industry is a network of "reform", "behavior modification", "therapeutic boarding schools" and wilderness experiences. These primarily for-profit programs present themselves as therapeutic treatment centers, and operate with impunity due to lack of government oversight and regulation. They claim to treat mental health and perform behavior modification, but most do not follow accepted psychological guidelines for treatment. This systemic abuse has historical roots dating back decades in the United States and abroad. The “treatment” these children receive is too often the opposite of therapeutic. The abuse can leave survivors with lifelong trauma, including Complex PTSD. Practices include: physical abuse, neglect, psychological harm, sexual abuse, and pseudoscientific treatment tactics have been accounted by many and well documented over time. Many of these programs have been shut down, only to rebrand, reopen, or have others take their place. Without public awareness and government intervention, thousands of children will continue to suffer abuse. There are numerous cases of preventable death within the "Troubled Teen" industry. Including incidences of children who have taken their own lives trying to escape the trauma. Countless victims have suffered after returning home from these facilities as a result of the lack of viable treatment and unresolved, complex trauma. Programs and facilities like this exist globally and throughout the United States. They advertise themselves as premier rehab and treatment centers, but many are functionally for-profit, privately-run detention centers. Those programs deceive desperate parents, and hurt the children they claim to help. Breaking Code Silence aims to address this institutional child abuse through: Education, Research, Investigation, Legislation and Community Support.

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