Child abuse and neglect are large issues for the safety of children in America. 679,000 children experienced abuse in Federal Fiscal Year 2013. Since April is Child Abuse Prevention Month, it’s a good time to consider how you are supporting families and children in your community.
Fast Facts about Child Abuse (from the CDC)
- Four common types of child abuse are physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse and neglect
- In 2013 there were 678,923 officially reported cases of child abuse
- Research suggests that the reported number of abuses is much lower than the actual number which could be as high as 1 in 4
- 27% of reported abuses involve children younger than 3 years old.
Encouraging and supportive communities for parents and children can help halt child abuse. Here are some ways to strengthen your communities.
- Know the signs of abuse
- Talk to parents and show your support. Caring for other parents helps them not to feel isolated and allows them to pass encouragement and support onto others. If you are a parent, don’t hesitate to reach out to people who you can positively impact you if you need support.
- Become involved with local programs to help struggling families in your community. If you have time to volunteer or can make a donation to those programs, that can be a great help as they are often in need of support.
- Talk to children and educate them about what abuse really means. Discuss what is and isn’t appropriate and describe the different types of abuse mentioned If you are a parent, explain to your children that they should always feel comfortable talking to you about their lives. If you aren’t a parent, it’s still valuable to be an active listener to children in your life (younger siblings, cousins or family friends) when you can.
- Learn more ways to take action
Guardian wants to help you keep your children safe. Learn more about helping to protect families.