April is Child Abuse Prevention Awareness Month
The following article was in the April Monthly Messenger, published by Potter Children’s Home.
According to the latest U. S Department of Health and Human Service data (Child Maltreatment 2009), approximately 702,000 children were found to be victims of substantiated abuse and neglect. An average of more than four children die every day as a result of child abuse or neglect. In 2009, 35.8% of child maltreatment fatalities were associated with neglect also. Another 36.7% of fatalities were the result of multiple maltreatment type.
No group of childen is immune. Girls were slightly more likely to be victims than boys. Children of all ages experience abuse and neglect. Young children are more vulnerable and are most likely to die from maltreatment. Children younger than 4 accounted for over 80% of those killed. These children are the most vulnerable for many reasons, including their dependency, small size, and inablity to defend themselves.
No matter how the fatal abuse occurs, one fact of great concern is that the perpatrators are by definition, individuals responsible for the care and supervision of their victims. We all share a responsibility to help keep children safe. We need to take steps to prevent abuse from occuring in the first place.
You can find this information and more at U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Administration on Children, Youth, and Families, Children’s Bureau (2010), Child Maltreatment (2009). Available from the Child Welfare Information Gateway. Available online at www.childwelfare.gov/pubs/factsheets/fatality.pdf
Tags: Child Abuse