Pelham goes blue in support of child abuse prevention
Published 8:30 am Tuesday, April 5, 2016
By JESSA PEASE / Staff Writer
PELHAM— As residents drive by Pelham City Hall while travelling down U.S. 31, they may notice bright blue spotlights shining over the building.
These spotlights are in honor of National Child Abuse Prevention and Awareness month, according to Kenneth Paschal, state president of the Alabama Family Rights Association.
“This is an important community campaign that links parental alienation with child abuse because, after all, it is a form of mental abuse that children suffer,” Paschal said in an April 1 email.
Pelham is partnering with the Alabama Family Rights Association and the Exchange Club of Shelby County, according to Paschal, to bring awareness to overcoming parental alienation while also standing against all forms of abuse and neglect.
An April 1 press release states that parental alienation, or hostile aggressive parenting, is a group of behaviors that are damaging to a child’s mental and emotional well-being.
Hostile aggressive parenting can interfere with the relationship of a child and either parent, according to the release, and is most often accompanied by high conflict marriages, separation or divorce.
“April is Child Abuse Prevention and Awareness Month,” Paschal said. “A time to emphasize that our children deserve the leadership of the adults (parents, leaders, community) around them to ensure their health, wellness and safety.”
The Alabama Family Rights Association and Exchange Club of Shelby County will also be planting a Pinwheel Garden on the lawn at Pelham City Hall to represent the happy, healthy childhood that all children deserve.
“We want all members of the community that pass by to stop and take notice and learn more about the symbolism behind our pinwheel garden,” Paschal stated in the press release. “Our 40 pinwheels, planted in the shape of a heart, represent the estimated 40,000 children each year that are restricted by the Alabama court systems to visiting and building healthy relationships with one of their two fit parents.”
For more information on the Alabama Family Rights Association, visit Alfra.org.