34 J. Soc. & Soc. Welfare 9 (2007)
Two Decades after McMartin: A Follow-up of 22 Convicted Day Care Employees

handle is hein.journals/jrlsasw34 and id is 645 raw text is: Two Decades After McMartin:
A Follow-up of 22 Convicted
Day Care Employees
MARY DEYOUNG
Grand Valley State University
Department of Sociology
It has been more that two decades since the notorious McMar-
tin Preschool case created a day care ritual abuse master-narra-
tive that recruited many social workers into becoming involved
in case-finding, investigations, interviewing and advocacy. The
purpose of this article is threefold: it introduces a sample of 22
day care employees who were convicted in day care ritual abuse
cases; it updates their current legal status; and it discusses the
relevance of these cases to social workers who currently are being
recruited by today's new master narratives about extrafamil-
ial sexual threats to children, whether from neighborhood pedo-
philes, child pornographers, parish priests or internet predators.
Keywords: day care, ritual abuse, social work
It has been more than two decades since the notorious
McMartin Preschool case came to public attention. At the
Nightmare Nursery, as the Manhattan Beach, California pre-
school was quickly tagged by the popular press (Green, 1984),
more than 350 past and present enrollees accused their provid-
ers of sexually abusing them in rituals that included such acts
as blood-drinking, cannibalism and infant sacrifice.
The appalling nature of the allegations in the McMartin
Preschool case not only contributed to that era's rising social
anxiety about the sexual abuse of children (Best, 1990), but
Journal of Sociology & Social Welfare, December 2007, Volume XXXIV, Number 4
9

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