Child Abuse and Neglect

The following statistics on abused and neglected children will help practitioners quantify and plan strategies to combat child abuse and neglect.

In 1999, child protective services agencies received reports on about 2.97 million allegedly maltreated children (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2001), close to the 2.9 million that were reported in the Action Plan. The allegations in 28 percent of the 1999 reports were substantiated; of those substantiated reports, 52 percent of the victims were female (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2001).

Victimization rates varied by race and ethnicity. African American children had the highest rate of victimization (25.2 per 1,000), followed by Hispanics (12.6 per 1,000), whites (10.6 per 1,000), and Asian/Pacific Islanders (4.4 per 1,000) (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2001). Children age 3 and younger had the highest rates of neglect (10.8 per 1,000 for boys and 10.3 per 1,000 for girls), but boys ages 4 - 11 had the highest rate of physical abuse (2.6 per 1,000). Girls were more likely to be sexually abused, with 12- to 15-year-olds in the most danger (2.8 per 1,000) (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2001).

Eighty-seven percent of the victims were maltreated by one or both parents; 44.7 percent of the substantiated cases involved a mother acting alone (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2001). Children under age 6 accounted for 86 percent of fatalities caused by child abuse and neglect, with children less than a year old accounting for 43 percent (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2001).

To understand the effects of victimization, it is important to consider the risk factors that can lead to problem behaviors. For example, in a prospective study that followed a group of abused and neglected children (908 in the treatment group compared with 667 in the control group, who had not been abused and neglected), Kaufman and Widom (1999) reported that being abused or neglected in childhood increased the likelihood that a youth would run away from home, which, in turn, increased the risk for juvenile arrest. The abused and neglected group completed fewer years of schooling and scored significantly lower than the control group on intellectual functioning, irrespective of age, sex, race, and criminal history.

Significantly more members of the abused and neglected group held menial and semiskilled jobs, and they were more likely to be unemployed or underemployed than the members of the control group, who were more likely to be skilled workers and professionals. As a result, members of the treatment group had lower earning potential. In their personal lives, victims of child abuse and neglect also suffered greater marital instability and had a higher incidence of separation and divorce than members of the control group. The results of Kaufman and Widom's study show the long-term effects of childhood victimization and highlight the importance of efforts to prevent it.

Source: US Department of Justice
Search All Articles
Related Articles
No Child Left Behind Increases Parents' Choices
Nclb_thHow No Child Left Behind provides educational choices
No Child Left Behind and Charter Schools
Apple_thHow Charter Schools work with the No Child Left Behind law
No Child Left Behind and School Safety
Books_thWhy No School Left Behind will make schools safer and more drug-free
Are You Ready for Earthquakes?
Areyouready_030_thHow to be better prepared in an Earthquake

More...
Most Popular
Victimization as a Precursor to Battering of Parents or Caretakers by Children
Dv_thYoung children exposed to domestic violence are more likely to become violent themselves
What Is A Short Sale?
GraphthumbIn a short sale, the owner of a home and their mortgage lender agree to sell the home at a discounted price.
Questionnaires: Taking the Pulse of the Community
Qmarks_thHow to create a questionnaire and what questions to ask.
Jobs in the Current Economic Market
NetworkingthumbYou will most likely get your new job through networking, not through replying to an ad from the newspaper or online.

More...

Zip Code Profiler

Neighborhoods, Home Values, Schools, City & State Data, Sex Offender Lists, more.

Instant Home Value!