Thumbs up: A Manchester Township woman is one of 11 people from around the state who will help change Pennsylvania's child abuse reporting practices in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky scandal.
Gov. Tom Corbett has tapped Delilah Rumburg to serve on the state Task Force on Child Protection, which has been charged with studying how child abuse is reported and responded to; collecting input from the public; and reporting how procedures, laws and training can be improved.
The director of the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape and the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, Rumburg already has a list of proposals.
She'd like to see required training for those professions -- like doctors, teachers and coaches -- who are mandated to report suspected child abuse. She's also in favor of "increased accountability" among government offices that investigate abuse allegations.
The House and Senate set up the task force in response to the child sex-abuse scandal in which Sandusky, a former Penn State assistant football coach, is accused of molesting 10 boys over a 15-year period.
Two Penn State officials have been charged with perjury amid accusations that they lied to a grand jury about the university's response to abuse reports. Others, including longtime football coach Joe Paterno, lost their jobs.
Thumbs up: To the people behind York County's new specialized treatment court for veterans charged with misdemeanors.
This is the fourth such diversionary program in the county -- a drug court launched in 1997, followed by mental-health court in 2005 and DUI court in 2010, according to Common Pleas Judge Penny L. Blackwell.
The programs not only have significantly lowered recidivism rates for defendants who complete them, they also save taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars each year -- money that would have been spent locking up offenders, county officials said.
Blackwell was one of the county's early advocates of veterans court. She and others have been working to make it happen for about a year, she said.
Treatment courts do no let offenders off the hook, advocates say, so defendants are still held responsible for their actions. What the program does do is focus on the root of a defendant's problems and require him or her to complete classes or counseling -- whatever it takes to "fix" their problem so they become productive, law-abiding citizens.
In the case of veterans, those problems are often post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injuries, according to U.S. Rep Todd Platts, who said society needs to do more for war veterans.
The new veterans court will be presided over by new Common Pleas Judge Craig T. Trebilcock, who served in the Army for 24 years and still serves in the Army Reserve. He also served in 2003 during the U.S. invasion of Iraq.