Child abuse deaths on the rise
October 27, 12:48 PM
Children of all ages can be the victims of abuse.
According to a study by The National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System (NCANDS) 1,760 American children died as a result of abuse or neglect in 2007. (Read the AP article here.) Last week, children’s advocates pressed our leaders in Washington to raise funding for child welfare agencies in order to help children who are victims of abuse, and also to help state agencies develop prevention programs.
Child protective services across the nation are experiencing a shortage of manpower to respond to the growing number of suspected abuses, and lately there has been a call not only for more social workers, but for the support and awareness of the community.
While we all consider the inner-relationships of another family to be sacred, the safety of children is ultimately the responsibility of every adult who knows them. Prevent Child Abuse America provides an article on ways to recognize child abuse.
The physical and emotional abuse of a child is many times the result of misplaced anger directed at the child. It is easy to become frustrated with the challenges of everyday life and parenting, and perhaps some parents need to learn to thoughtfully express and control their frustrations. Find here a link the PCAA’s article “Twelve alternatives to lashing out.”
So what can you do? If you know a parent who is overwhelmed, you may have a chance to prevent the types of circumstances that lead to a high-stress household and potential abuse. Offer your time and support, and if warranted, your advice. Know a child personally, so that you may be better able to recognize signs of abuse, and more importantly, allow that child to know that there is someone who cares for them. Finally, help raise awareness within your community so that we can all support happy childhoods.
If you or someone you know is aware of an abuse, or if you feel that a family you know is in need of support, contact your local child welfare agency.