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National Child Abuse Prevention Month

National Child Abuse Awareness Month- we all play a role


This April marks National Child Abuse Awareness Month. A month where charities, expert organizations, professionals and young people come together to fight against the prevalent issue of child neglect and abuse. This year’s theme discusses how ‘we all play a role in preventing child abuse and neglect’, spreading the message of building brighter childhoods. So, what is child abuse?

what is child abuse?

Child neglect and abuse abuse takes many different forms. This includes domestic abuse, sexual abuse, physical abuse, online abuse, emotional abuse, physical neglect, emotional neglect, child sexual exploitation (CSE), female genital mutilation (FGM) and child trafficking. As you can tell from this list, child neglect and abuse is an incredibly broad issue, affecting so many children and young people across the globe.

The general definition of child abuse, as defined by the American Society for Positive Care of Children (SPCC), is ‘any act or failure to act on the part of a parent or caretaker, which results in death, serious physical or emotional harm, sexual abuse, or exploitation of a child, or an act or failure to act presenting an imminent risk of serious harm to a child’.

what are the statistics?

Child neglect and abuse is a heart-breaking, tragic and distressing issue that is becoming increasingly prevalent in the United States. Although child neglect and abuse statistics are renowned for being under-reported, the current numbers on record still paint a horrifying picture of the epidemic that is sweeping the nation.

  • Child abuse reports involved 7.2 million children
  • 3% of victims are neglected
  • 2% of victims are physically abused
  • 4% of victims are sexually abused
  • 9% of victims are psychologically maltreated
  • Almost five children die every day from child abuse
  • 9% of the child abuse victims die from neglect
  • 9% of the child abuse victims die from physical abuse
  • 4% of children who die from child abuse are under one year
  • Almost 60,000 children are sexually abused
  • More than 90% of juvenile sexual abuse victims know their perpetrator
  • Estimated that between 50-60% of maltreatment fatalities are not recorded on death certificates
  • Child abuse crosses all socio-economic and educational levels, religions, ethnic and cultural groups

what are the warning signs of child abuse?

As previously stated, child neglect and abuse can take many forms. Despite this, there are a few factors to look out for that many indicate a case of child abuse (American SPCC).

Physical child abuse

  • Unexplained bruises, welts, burns, fractures, lacerations or abrasions
  • Being wary of adult contact
  • Apprehensive when other children cry
  • Aggressiveness
  • Withdrawal
  • Frightened of parents
  • Afraid to go home
  • Reports injury by parents

Physical neglect

  • Consistent hunger, poor hygiene, inappropriate dress
  • Constant fatigue
  • Unattended physical problems
  • Begging/stealing food
  • Constantly falling asleep in class
  • Alcohol or drug abuse
  • Delinquency (e.g. thefts)
  • States there is no care-giver

Emotional child maltreatment

  • Habit disorders (sucking, biting, rocking, etc.)
  • Conduct disorders (antisocial, destructible, etc.)
  • Neurotic traits (sleep disorders, speech disorders, inhibition of play)
  • Compliant, passive
  • Aggressive, demanding
  • Inappropriate adult behavior
  • Inappropriate infant behavior

Sexual child abuse

  • Difficulty walking or sitting
  • Bruises or bleeding in external genitalia, vaginal or anal areas
  • Unwilling to change for gym
  • Withdrawn, fantasy or infantile behavior
  • Bizarre, sophisticated, or unusual sexual behavior or knowledge
  • Poor peer-to-peer relationships
  • Delinquent or run away
  • Reports sexual assault by care-giver

how can Impero Education Pro detect cases of child neglect and abuse?

With keyword detection, real-time monitoring, and activity logs, the online safety features included in Impero Education Pro are designed to help counselors, teaching staff and superintendents fulfil their legal obligations and keep students safe online.

With keyword libraries including child exploitation, sexual assault, adult content, suicide and self-harm, staff are able to intervene and offer counter-narratives to help young people arrive at a more positive outcome through receiving direct help and support.

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