Letter to Ella Baker Center for Human Rights
By Isabelle Allgood-Neal
Member, PTAVE Board of Directors

Spetember 13, 2006

[Sent by snail-mail on PTAVE letterhead]

September 13, 2006

Van Jones, Exec. Dir.
Ella Baker Center for Human Rights
344 40th Street
Oakland, CA 94609

Dear Mr. Jones:

As a member of the Board of Directors of PTAVE, I have read the exchange of letters between your assistant Sadiyah Seraaj and our Executive Director, Jordan Riak. On behalf of the children for whom we advocate, I must take this opportunity to explain that the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights and PTAVE do indeed share a similar focus. We both focus on human rights abuses. We aim to prevent abuse by educating people about the importance of non-violent childrearing. Current research on the development of the brain proves conclusively that what is done to a child in the first three years of life becomes a part of the structure of the brain and strongly influences whether a child will become empathic or violent.

Our short term goals may be a Summer of Nonviolence or a Decade of Nonviolence, but we must continue to work towards the long-term goal of non-violent upbringing of children as the norm. We must acknowledge that just as violence from our homes and schools spills out into the community, so too will non-violent environments for children spill peace into our society.

I hope that the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights will not miss this opportunity to help prevent human rights abuses through education. Together we can make it happen by showing people that the only way to break the cycle of violence and human rights abuses in our society is to adopt nonviolent childrearing methods.

Thank you for your kind consideration.


Isabelle Allgood-Neal
Board of Directors
Parents and Teachers Against Violence in Education (PTAVE)
P.O. Box 1033, Alamo, CA 94507

Click here to read Jordan Riak's letter to Ella Baker Center for Human Rights.
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