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Lancaster Interchurch Peace Witness is a grassroots association dedicated to promoting biblical values of justice, care of creation, peace and nonviolent solutions to conflict.

PA Conference on Torture

Categories: Human Rights,Local Peace Events,Violence in Society

1st PA Conference on Torture
October 28-29, 2011
Market Square Presbyterian Church • Harrisburg PA

Pennsylvanian Network Against Torture (PANAT) brings together individuals and groups that share a common concern about U.S. sponsored torture and U.S. condoned rendition, as well as torture in our prisons and isolation units.

Task of Conference: coordinate ongoing anti-torture education, survivor care, and legal/legislative advocacy, with a focus on:

  • U.S. sponsored torture
  • Torture in our domestic prisons, in particular, prolonged isolation
  • Training for professional and volunteer caregivers of torture survivors

Although this conference will be open to the public with excellent presenters, our primary focus is to build a state-wide network for effective political action and community education. We hope you will consider joining in the discussion.

On Friday evening, Kate Porterfield, psychologist at the Bellevue/NYU Program for Survivors of Torture will speak on “A Phobia of Hope: Reflections from a Psychologist in Guantanamo.”

Saturday’s conference presenters will be:

  • John Humphries, Director for Program Coordination, National Religious Campaign Against Torture, to speak on strategies to end U.S. sponsored and U.S. condoned torture.
  • King Downing, Program Analyst for the American Friends Service Committee, will discuss issues of prolonged isolation in federal and state prisons.
  • Kate Porterfield, Psychologist at The Bellevue/NYU Program for Survivors of Torture, will discuss the psychological, emotional, and cognitive effects of torture and war and refugee trauma.

This will be followed by workshops and strategy sessions.

For more information about the conference, and to register on-line, please go to

Questions, please contact Scilla Wahrhaftig at, American Friends Service Committee, PA Program , 412-371-3607 or Helen Gerhardt at 412-441-0711,

Author: LIPW