Presentation on theme: "Issues in Child abuse & Neglect"— Presentation transcript:
1Issues in Child abuse & Neglect How to define?Who gets to define?Where to draw the line?What to do about it?
2Types of AbuseOtherNeglectEmotionalSexualPhysical
3Physical Abuse“Knowingly inflicts cruel and inhuman punishment upon a child”BUT “discipline including spanking, administered in a reasonable manner, shall not be construed to be abuse” RS Mo
4Sexual AbuseFondling a child's genitals, intercourse, incest, rape, sodomy, exhibitionism, and commercial exploitation through prostitution or the production of pornographic materials.Primary issues are ones of proof
5Emotional AbuseActs or omissions by the parents or other caregivers that have caused, or could cause, serious behavioral, cognitive, emotional, or mental disorders.Line-drawing and causation are primary issues
6Neglect: Physical Neglect Refusal of, or delay in, seeking health care;Abandonment; expulsion from the home or refusal to allow a runaway to return home; andInadequate supervision.
7Educational Neglect allowance of chronic truancy, failure to enroll a child of mandatory school age in school, andfailure to attend to a special educational need.
8Emotional neglectmarked inattention to the child's needs for affection;refusal of or failure to provide needed psychological care;spouse abuse in the child's presence; andpermission of drug or alcohol use by the child.
9Neglect issues“Fault” v. “Protection”Risk of bias
10Consequences Numbers overall depend on definitions 160,000 severe injuries annually1,000 to 2,000 children die annuallyFuture consequences include increased risks of substance abuse, mental health problems, criminal activity, and abuse of their own children and spouse
13Who are the children? : Gender SEXUAL ABUSE OTHER ABUSE
14Who are the children? : Race OtherWhiteBlackHispanic
15Who are the abusers? Parents and Family (75-85%) Under age 40 (80%) Substance abuse (50-80%)Both male and female (though varies by type of abuse)Anyone can abuse a child.
16Complex interaction of many factors Why?Complex interaction of many factors
17Community/society High crime rate Lack of or few social services High poverty rate (Poverty is the most frequently and persistently noted risk factor for child abuse)High unemployment rate
18Parental characteristics History of abuse or violenceYouth, Emotional immaturity, poor parenting skillsSingle parent or few social supportsPoor coping skills, Low self-esteemSubstance abuseUnwanted pregnancy; multiple young children
22Child Abuse & Neglectany physical injury, sexual abuse, or emotional abuse of childother than by accidental meansby those responsible for the child’s care, custody and control,except reasonable discipline
23Neglect: failure to provide proper or necessary support,education as required by law,nutrition or medical, surgical orany other care necessary for well beingby those responsible for the care, custody, and control of the child
24R.S.Mo Abuse“any physical injury, sexual abuse, or emotional abuse inflicted on a child other than by accidental means by those responsible for the child’s care, custody and control”“discipline including spanking, administered in a reasonable manner, shall not be construed to be abuse.”
25What is Reasonable Discipline? Raboin v. North Dakota Department of Human ServicesShould the United States sign the Convention on the Rights of the Child?
27Child Abuse Reporting Statute Definition of AbuseReporters : Mandatory/VoluntaryImmunity/Penalty for ReportersPrivileges waivedInvestigation/AssessmentFindingsCentral RegistryAlleged Perpetrator’s rights /183
28Should everyone be a mandated reporter? Mo. SB This act would provide that any person who has reasonable cause to suspect child abuse shall be required to immediately report the suspected abuse to the division. This act also adds an enhanced penalty for failing to report child abuse from a Class A misdemeanor to a Class D felony when the child at issue dies as a result of the abuse or neglect.
29How does the legal system respond? Criminal ProsecutionPrivate Civil ActionsJuvenile/Family Court Intervention
31Intervention Hot Line reports Require investigation Protective Custody Reunification PlansReferrals for Termination of Parental Rights
32Termination of Parental Rights - Procedure Juvenile Officer Investigates and files or gives notice of intent not to file petitionFamily Court may order Juvenile officer to file
33Due Process in TPR Cases The standard of proof in all termination of parental rights cases is by clear, cogent and convincing(See Santosky v. Kramer for analysis)Parents have right to counsel by statute but not necessarily under constitution (See Lassiter)
34Termination by Consent Written, witnessed parental consent, reviewed and approved by judgeJudge determines that termination is in the best interests of the childMay also occur through an adoption petition
35Mandatory Filing for Involuntary Termination Foster care for 15 of past 22 monthsAbandoned infantCertain criminal acts by a parent (e.g.,murder or felony assault with serious injury of another child)
36Common reasons for foster care Parent is incarceratedParent has a substance abuse problem; or
37Exceptions A compelling reason that filing would not be in BIC; or The child is being cared for by a relative;The family has not been provided sufficient reunification servicesParent has a mental condition which impairs his or her ability to adequately provide for the child
38Additional Bases for TPR Abandonment (actual or constructive)Abuse & NeglectFailure to Rectify conditions that brought child under family court authorityConviction/Guilty plea to certain sexual crimesParent is “Unfit”
39Parental Abandonment six months or longer, Unknown identity (or) left the child without any provision for parental support and visits/ communication
40Abuse & Neglect for TPRA permanent mental condition which renders parent unfitA chemical dependency which renders parent unfit and can’t be treated adequatelySevere or recurrent acts of physical, emotional or sexual abuserepeatedly or continuously failed to provide the child with adequate food, clothing, shelter, education, or other care
41Failure to RectifyThe terms of the social service plan and the extent of progress in complianceAgency assistance to parentParent’s a mental conditionParent’s chemical dependency
42Parental “Unfitness”a consistent pattern of committing child abuse or drug abuse before the child; orparental rights were involuntarily terminated within three years immediately prior to the requested termination with regard to the current child.
43BIC the child’s emotional ties to the parent The parent’s interest, commitment, contact and support of childPossibility of reunification in ascertainable time with more servicesLength of incarcerationdeliberate harmful acts of parent or another with parent’s knowledge
44Sexual Abuse Most abusers are related or live in the home Unlike physical abuse, not spontaneous, but seductionPerpetrator often convinces himself that child wants to participatePerpetrators threaten child to remain quiet
45Effects of Sexual Abuse on Child Pervasive guiltActing out, often sexuallyKnowledge of sexual matters beyond ageDifficult to sustain true fabrication
46Child sexual abuse accommodation syndrome SecrecyHelplessnessEntrapmentDelayed, conflicting and unconvincing disclosuresRetraction