Thursday, June 9, 2016

What Lauren Book's charity likes to say about her critics when she thinks no one is going to fact-check her work

I bet she could eat an apple through a picket fence.
Say hello to Claire VanSusteren, the equally airheaded "Communications Director" for Lauren's Kids. She responds to messages sent through the Lauren's Kids page. In response to the Broward New Times article exposing the connection to controversial GEO Group, someone who read the article decided to ask Lauren's Kids about this connection to GEO Group.  Here is what this concerned citizen (name withheld to protect his identity) wrote:

A new message was received from the Lauren's Kids "Contact Us" website form. 

Name: *****

Email: *****
Phone: 
City: Tallahassee
State: FL 
Subject: General Information 
Message: After reading "Lauren Book, Running Unopposed, Raises $1.3 Million Despite Criticisms" in the Broward/ Palm Beach New Times, I have to know if it is true that Lauren Book took $65,000 from GEO Group, knowing that GEO Group had such a track record of abusing kids. If that is the case, I see no reason to further support your organization.


And this is their response, written by Claire VanScumturden:

Mr. *****:

It was good to hear from you.  First of all, you are reading an article in the New Times which is certainly a publication in our community that does not like to get confused with full facts.  They often write from a slanted perspective.  That said, Lauren is criticized in that article by a man by the name of Derek Logue, a convicted sexual offender who abused a young boy. We know him well. He runs an organization known as “Once Fallen”.  Mr. Logue is a constant critic of Lauren’s education and awareness work and frankly, we don’t waste much time worrying about what Mr. Logue has to say, or whether he says it in any publication – most journalists ignore Mr. Logue.  He is the lone critic.  He criticizes all of our advocacy efforts to strengthen laws protecting children and does so like an attack dog.

Yes, Lauren is running for the State Senate to continue her good work in advocating for children and families, as well as for education, the environment, and the community as a whole.  Yes, it is true, her Political Committee did accept approximately $50,000 (not $65,000) in contributions from the GEO Group.  GEO Group  runs private prisons - in Florida and around the U.S.   The criticism in the article is about a youthful  offender facility in another state, it is an allegation and she is not aware of any charges ever being brought against GEO.  Furthermore, those allegations to date, have only been brought to her attention through Derek Logue commentary.  We don’t know a lot of the details of Mr. Logue’s allegations but those allegations and statements, have not occurred in Florida.  The  GEO Group previously was the operator of the Florida Civil Commitment Facility that houses those individuals who are civilly committed for sexual offenses in our great State.  Mr. Logue does not think such facilities should ever exist, a point that Lauren and likely most reasonable people, would vociferously disagree with him on. GEO no longer owns or operates that facility, known as the Jimmy Ryce Center, in Arcadia, Florida.  It is now run by a company called CorrectCare.  The GEO Group has never been charged with abusing children, and those allegations again come from Derek Logue, a convicted sex offender.  Consider the source.

Those are in fact, the facts as known to Lauren.

No one could credibly assert that Lauren Book has any interest, other than the best interests and the protection of children and families in her heart at her very core.  She gets up every day and fights the fight to bring awareness and education, while bringing about systemic change across our great state in the fight to better protect children.

The people at the  New Times should have asked questions about their “source” Derek Logue, to the family of the young boy he abused.  They would have quite a different opinion and wouldn’t consider citing Mr. Logue as any kind of authority.

We value your support in our efforts to protect children and hope this clarifies any questions you might have.

Thank you.

Claire VanSusteren
Director of Communciations
Lauren’s Kids, Inc.
18851 N.E. 29th Avenue
Suite 1010
Aventura, FL 33180
Phone: 305.935.1866
Fax:  305.935.9737
email: claire@laurenskids.org



It seems Lauren Book's little organization has a little problem with the facts, but here is my take on this letter: 

1. "First of all, you are reading an article in the New Times which is certainly a publication in our community that does not like to get confused with full facts.  They often write from a slanted perspective." How is the New times slanted when they cite their sources? 

2. "...who abused a young boy." That's what happens when you rely on Encyclopedia Dramatica for information, Claire. Try getting the gender right. This isn't a transgender bathroom issue. 

3. "The criticism in the article is about a youthful  offender facility in another state, it is an allegation and she is not aware of any charges ever being brought against GEO." If you are against child abuse, does it matter it didn't happen in FloriDUH? Also, a five minute Google search could verify the fact that the Walnut Grove juvenile facility in MS was taken over by the feds because  United States Department of Justice had accused the facility of "systematic, egregious, and dangerous practices exacerbated by a lack of accountability and controls", and stated that sexual misconduct there was "among the worst that we have seen in any facility anywhere in the nation." But hey, it wasbn't lauren's problem, they weren't FloriDUH's kids!

4. "We don’t know a lot of the details of Mr. Logue’s allegations but those allegations and statements, have not occurred in Florida." Hey Claire, you moron, try doing something called RESEARCH next time. There is a wonderful tool called a "search engine." Try one-- Google, Yahoo, Bing, Ask.com, Dogpile, Gigablast, even Netscape (if they still exist). 

5. "The people at the  New Times should have asked questions about their “source” Derek Logue, to the family of the young boy he abused.  They would have quite a different opinion and wouldn’t consider citing Mr. Logue as any kind of authority." So in addition to getting Logue's case wrong, we are expected to "consider the source." Okay, the source of the info is NOT Derek Logue, but a combination of lots of news sources found through a search engine, the US Dept of Justice, and the records from the Florida Dept of State, which reveals that Leadership for Broward, Lauren Book's PAC, collected $50k from GEO Group plus $15k from GEO Group subsidiary GEO Health. (That's $65k, by the way, Claire, since you obviously suck at math.)

In short, it seems that Lauren's Kids does not let like to let facts get in the way of their profits. She lied about her critics and denies taking money from groups that abuse children. And to think, Lauren Book might be YOUR senator soon. She doesn't need the senate seat, she needs the hot seat. 


2 comments:

  1. Did they just describe Derek Logue as a chihuahua dog?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. More like an attack dog, as in a pit bull or doberman.

      Delete