Penn State Sex Abuse Education Conference Shuts Out Representatives of USA Swimming Victims

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Below is an email exchange between Ed Vasquez, a spokesman for the advocacy group Lawyers Against the Sex Abuse of Children, and Pamela Driftmier, Pennsylvania State University’s director of professional education conferences.

I encourage readers interested in communicating their dismay to Penn State over its decision to exclude from its conference panels representatives of a sexual molestation scandal far more pervasive than PSU’s own Jerry Sandusky’s, and to get the university to overturn this decision, to email (pdriftmier@psu.edu) or call (814-863-5118) Driftmier.

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[Vasquez to Driftmier]

Saw news of your October conference. Will victims of USA Swimming coaching abuse be able to tell their stories through their attorney Robert Allard? While the crush of the media came down on Penn State, they ignored the largest sexual molestation scandal in US sports history. To date more than 65 coaches have been banned for sexually abusing their athletes and the leadership of this organization that selects our US Olympic team has escaped without any punishment whatsoever.

I think it is important for those attending to understand how these cultures develop in institutions (sports, churches, etc…) over the years and what must be done to stop the cover up and silence from these organizations.

If you Google USA Swimming and Robert Allard you will come upon hundreds of articles. It has been, and continues to be, Mr. Allard’s relentless work into the inner workings of the swimming world that has resulted in knowing what we know today.

I would respectfully ask that your program include us. We can put together a panel not only of an attorney but also very respected swimmers and coaches.

Thank you,
Ed Vasquez

*****

[Driftmier to Vasquez]

Dear Ed,

Thank you for your inquiry and offer of assistance.  It has been wonderful to receive so many offers to help with this important conference.  At this time our conference agenda has been established and presenters secured.  I hope that doesn’t deter you from registering, attending, and participating in the conversations that will take place.

I will also share your information with our committee to determine if any other future opportunities may exist.  If so, we will be sure to contact you.  We hope you are able to attend and look forward to meeting you.

Pamela A. Driftmier, M.Ed.

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