–submitted by Carol Toussaint; photo by John Bonsett-Veal
We’ve all heard of “no fly zones,” but Rotarians at Wednesday’s luncheon learned about “no hit zones” and what they can do to reinforce a culture of safety. Dane County District Attorney Ismael Ozanne explained why he cares about reducing corporal punishment of children and why we should all understand that hitting a child puts them at risk for detrimental outcomes that affect every aspect of our community including the criminal justice system.
Simply put, Ozanne explained that the phrase “corporal punishment” refers to inflicting pain to a person. Citing other standards of public safety we often take for granted, safeguarding early brain development through eliminating corporal punishment should be as commonplace as requiring car seats for infants and children. Bringing this message to the public needs to emphasize the purpose of such a program and his office has undertaken numerous ways of education through information.
Ozanne predicts that Dane County can become a national leader in working to create a “no hit zone” and noted that Stoughton is the first city in the U.S. to have set it up. More than two years ago, Ozanne began organizing community conversations and conferences with various professional groups interested in rebuilding the criminal system to make it more compassionate. Attention is on learning more about the current research and by addressing the root causes of aggression, domestic violence, mental issues and AODA issues.
Asking his audience to get to know more about ways to create and reinforce an environment of safety and comfort for all, Ozanne stated the Dane County District Attorney’s office stands ready to help.
Did you miss our meeting this week? Our thanks to WisconsinEye for videotaping. Watch it here.