Thanks to everyone who voted in the APTA Pediatrics election! Congratulations to incoming President Mary Jane Rapport, incoming Chief Delegate Dawn James, incoming Nominating Committee Member Megan Flores, who will start their terms at the end of the APTA Pediatrics Business Meeting at CSM, and to Advocacy Director Maria Jones and Leadership Development Director Erin Bompiani who will be serving second terms. THANK YOU to all the APTA Pediatrics leaders and candidates for the support and energy you give to your profession – our organization is only as strong as our wonderful volunteers! If you’d like to get involved in leadership, we’d love to have you – sign up for APTA Engage to get curated volunteer announcements (also listed in Milestones).
Applications are open for the third Pediatric Education Summit, which will bring together a diverse group of novice and experienced pediatric educators, including clinical educators and pediatric education researchers, to revise and update the essential core competencies. The goal is to ensure that the competencies continue to effectively guide pediatric professional physical therapy education and align with ongoing efforts across the profession to move toward excellence and competency-based education. The Summit also seeks to build capacity among pediatric physical therapists in best practice in education and educational research and to advance the work and success of Education Summits I and II. Education Summit III will be held June 5-6, 2023, at the APTA headquarters in Alexandria, VA. Click here for more details and to apply:
APTA Pediatrics Board Meetings are held virtually the second Tuesday of each month, 7:30-9:30 pm ET. Questions may be directed to APTA Pediatrics Leadership. Minutes from the most recent Board Meeting are posted below.
As states continue to present and pass legislation related to LGBTQ+ rights, we want our communities to know that APTA Pediatrics stands in support of LGBTQ+ youth and their families across the U.S. who continually face legislative actions that undermine their worth, value, health, and well-being. As healthcare providers, we urge those who are considering the passing of such legal measures to recognize that these bills adversely affect the community by removing protection from discrimination and compromising their physical and mental health. We propose including and listening to those who will be directly impacted by these social and political determinants of health. It is only when we listen and understand that we can recognize and overcome healthcare and health disparities that negatively impact so many in our communities.
The following link shows the legislative actions that have been or are in the process of being passed: https://freedomforallamericans.org/legislative-tracker/
Furthermore, if you would like to take action and access more resources about how to better advocate for LGBTQ+ youth and families, please see the following statement of advocacy that was previously written and released by APTA Pediatrics with the help of the APTA Pediatrics DEI Committee: APTA Pediatrics Statement on Transgender Legislation.pdf - Google Drive
APTA Pediatrics DEI Committee, with support from the APTA Pediatrics Board of Directors
APTA Pediatrics Stance Against Gun Violence in the Aftermath of Escalating Mass Shootings, Including Children and Teachers
The mass shooting in Uvalde, TX, is the 27th school shooting this year. Nineteen children and two teachers died in the deadliest school shooting since the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting claimed 26 lives in 2012. In the 18 days after the racial massacre at a supermarket in Buffalo, NY, there were 18 mass shootings in the United States, including at a hospital in Tulsa, OK.
Firearms are now the leading cause of death in children and adolescents 0-19 years of age, with an 83% increase in youth firearm fatalities over the past decade; nearly two-thirds of youth firearm deaths were from homicides. Black youth had an unprecedented 40% increase in firearm fatalities between 2019 to 2020, according to a commentary published in Lancet Child and Adolescent Health. More than 311,000 students have experienced gun violence at school since Columbine. In 2022 we have had more mass shootings than days in the year. These tragic statistics point to the urgent need to take action to prevent more youth from dying by firearms.
Please take a moment to read:
- American Academy of Pediatrics’ statement on the Texas school shooting and gun violence
- American Medical Association’s statement on Texas school shooting and gun violence
- American Pediatric Surgical Association’s statement on gun violence
- American Physical Therapy Association’s statement on firearms violence
Now is the time to reach out to your legislators to engage in difficult conversations about how to protect children and make our communities safer.
A Statement from the APTA Pediatrics President:
APTA Pediatrics members provide services in a variety of settings to some of the most vulnerable individuals in our society. Our community of physical therapists, physical therapist assistants, and physical therapy students grieve for the tragic loss of children and teachers in Uvalde, TX, the individuals in Buffalo, NY, and the victims of all mass shootings and gun violence in the United States.
Members of APTA Pediatrics and the American Physical Therapy Association embrace an evidence-based practice model. Congruent with that model, we take evidence while asking questions and formulating strategies on how to protect and enhance the members of our society, including our most vulnerable members.
Is it time to work together and review evidence from other industrialized countries and compare outcomes. Evidence shows that countries that have enacted policy change to curb gun violence see mass shootings as rare events rather than everyday occurrences.
APTA Pediatrics envisions a world where every child can experience a fulfilling life. Our core values challenge us to Advocate, Collaborate, Elevate:
- Advocate for safe environments for all members of society.
- Collaborate with other organizations to enact positive change for all members of society
- Elevate research and education on gun violence and prevention.
Although I understand the issues are complex, I encourage ALL members to be thoughtful leaders for our profession and the families that we serve by reaching out to your legislators to engage in difficult conversations, listen without judgment, and collectively come up with reasonable solutions to protect children and make our communities safer.
A Tibetan belief: "Tragedy should be utilized as a source of strength. No matter what sort of difficulties, how painful the experience is, if we lose our hope, that's our real disaster.”
Cindy Miles, PT, PhD
Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Pediatric Physical Therapy
President, APTA Academy of Pediatric Physical Therapy