Child Abuse and Neglect
Objectives Identify four major types of maltreatment.
Summarize common reasons behind abuse and maltreatment. Explain what can be done to prevent child abuse.
Statistics A report of child abuse is made every ten seconds
Approximately 80% of children that die from abuse are under the age of 4. It is estimated that between 50-60% of child fatalities due to maltreatment are not recorded as such on death certificates. More than 90% of juvenile sexual abuse victims know their perpetrator in some way. Child abuse occurs at every socioeconomic level, across ethnic and cultural lines, within all religions and at all levels of education. About 30% of abused and neglected children will later abuse their own children, continuing the horrible cycle of abuse. About 80% of 21 year olds that were abused as children met criteria for at least one psychological disorder.
Statistics Incidents and Children Reported to the Child Abuse/Neglect Hotline and Annual Percent Change in Missouri, Year Total Reports Annual Change Total Children 2007 52,979 77,481 2008 50,565 -4.6% 75,75,781 -2.2% 2009 51,896 2.6% 75,544 -0.3% 2010 56,897 9.6% 83,503 10.5% 2011 61,083 7.4% 90,709 8.6%
Maltreatment Most never come to the attention of authorities
May have threatened them with harm Feel intense guilt for things that are not their fault Emotional and physical scars can last forever Affect the overall health as well as their future relationships
Forms Federal Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA) defines maltreatment Physical Abuse Neglect Sexual Abuse Emotional and Verbal Abuse
Physical Abuse Intentionally causing an injuring to a child
Hitting, burning, shaking, or others
Neglect Physical and emotional
Failing to provide for a child’s basic needs Includes food, water, a place to live, love, and attention
Sexual Abuse Inappropriate sexual behavior with a child
Includes touching or taking photographs
Emotional and Verbal Abuse
Rejecting children Blaming them Constantly scolding them Especially for problems beyond their control
Signs Children may be Receiving Mistreatment
Learning problems that cannot be explained No adult supervision Withdrawal from others No desire to go home after school or other activities Fearfulness, as though waiting for something bad to happen Changes in school performance or behavior Untreated medical conditions
Signs that adults may be mistreating children
Sees the child as bad or worthless Makes frequent demands that the child cannot achieve Asks teachers to use physical discipline if the child misbehaves Denies child’s problems in school or at home Sees the child as a burden Rarely looks at the child Over-protective and demands secrecy
Consequences of Sexual Abuse
Run away from home Refuse to participate in physical activities Exhibit sexual knowledge beyond their normal level of development
Consequences of Emotional Abuse
Aggression Act inappropriately like an adult Bossing other children around Act like a very young child Rocking back and forth
Why Does Abuse Occur? Children with physical and mental disabilities are more likely to be abused Younger children are most often neglected Immature mothers People live in poverty and have fewer resources to help Socially isolated Stressed Substance abuse
Stop Maltreatment Encouraging young people to wait til older
Parenting classes Support groups Mandated reporter A person who is required by law to report maltreatment Teachers, doctors, nurses, counselors
Child Welfare Agency Once hears about abuse, sends someone to investigate Can place child in foster care Parents may be arrested and charge with crimes Court may end parental rights to their children
Treatment for Abused Children
Usually through counseling sessions Help people make sense of their feelings and behavior Improve interactions with others
Goals of Counselors Protecting children from further harm
Improve family communication Encouraging health friendships between children and their peers Teaching mistreated children to take care of themselves and make choices that help keep them safe Helping children have realistic expectations of parents who have problems Providing a safe place to express anger, disappointment, and sadness
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