It is April Once Again
Flowers are blooming, birds are chirping, snow is melting, and the sun is shining more each day…
However, not every child has a world of brightness, perfumed by roses, and the melodious tones of whippoorwills greeting the new season. Instead, their ears are assailed by deprecating language, and their nights are filled with terror, sometimes by their own family members. If the child dares to cry out and our crippled system shuns them (which it often does), then those same guardians make the child’s life a living hell until they recant.
And, the system meant to protect our children hemorrhages on spewing trails of children’s traumatized psyches and battered trust along its well-worn path of failed reform, like a rusty jalopy burbles globs of fermented oil down a rutted and dusty dirt road. Yet, it is time to stop pointing fingers and start taking ownership.
The system meant to protect our children does not live in a vacuum, we allow its continued dysfunction to thrive as our children’s screams rattle their brains, for that is the only safe place for them to cry out in their torment and anguish.
The system hemorrhages because there are not enough people willing to take a stand for our children and not enough people who are willing to hold the system accountable.
Until enough people – Learn the diverse signs of child abuse
Until enough people – Wrap their brains around the fact that people they know, love, or admire
Do horrific things to their own children, and to the children of those they know
Until enough people – Make their voices heard, report, follow up, and follow through
Until then – Our children will have no voice
Their innocence will continue to be lost
Their trust will continue to be mangled
Their Hope will continue to diminish
Until they merely exist to survive inside their silent horrors
Here are a few facts: The following information was taken from: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Division of Violence Prevention
Child Maltreatment Prevention
Child maltreatment includes all types of abuse and neglect of a child under the age of 18 by a parent, caregiver, or another person in a custodial role (e.g., clergy, coach, teacher). There are four common types of abuse:
CDC’s research and programs work to understand the problem of child maltreatment and prevent it before it begins.
Data & Statistics
There were 678,932 victims of child abuse and neglect reported to Child Protective Services (CPS) in 2013.
The youngest children are the most vulnerable with about 27% of reported victims being under the age of three.
CPS reports may underestimate the true occurrence of abuse and neglect.
A non-CPS study estimated that 1 in 4 children experience some form of child maltreatment in their lifetimes.
About 1,520 children died from abuse and neglect in 2013.
The total lifetime cost of child maltreatment is $124 billion each year.
Please, do not foll yourself into thinking this cannot happen in your own family, or in the family of someone you know. It can happen in any family. There is not magic inoculation. There is prevention. There is the ability to save a child. You can do this by educating yourself, enroll in training and seminars, develop an awareness, and nurture a willingness to acknowledge what may be happening to a child you know.
It Takes a Village to Save a Child! Become a part of our Village! Take Action! JDP