November 10, 1997 – January 26, 1998 Instructor: Rebecca (Becky) Quintieri, M.S. The maltreatment of children is a national problem. We are all responsible for the prevention of child abuse and neglect in our country. Violence against children must always be a priority for criminal justice officials, political leaders and the public we serve. It is very disturbing to find that most children are physically abused and neglected in the home, and is committed by persons known to and trusted by the child. Such as family members, relatives, baby-sitters or friends of the family. This type of harsh treatment has serious consequences for their future behavior.
Children are hardly ever abused just once. Rather, abuse is the result of patterns of behavior in a family. The signs and symptoms may only be apparent as time passes. It should also be noted that in 90% of the rapes of children less than twelve(12) years old, the child knew the offender, according to police reported data. This was reported by the U.S. Department of Justice – Bureau of Justice Statistics. There are four major types of child maltreatment: physical abuse, child neglect, sexual abuse, and emotional abuse.
physical abuse is the willful infliction of physical injury as a result of punching, beating, kicking, biting, shaking, burning or otherwise harming a child. The parent or caretaker may not have intended to hurt the child, rather the injury may have resulted from over-discipline or physical punishment. child neglect is characterized by failure to provide for the childs basics needs. Neglect can be physical, educational, or emotional. Physical neglect includes refusal of or delay in seeking health care, abandonment, expulsion from the home or refusal to allow a runaway to return home, and inadequate supervision. Educational neglect includes the allowance of chronic truancy, failure to enroll a child of mandatory school age in school, and failure to attend to a special educational need.
... of child abuse is neglect. Neglect accounts for 53.5% of child abuse nationwide (Child Maltreatment). Neglect is defined as: [a] child less than 18 years of age whose physical, mental ... defines child abuse specifically as [a]ny recent act or failure to act on the part of a parent or caretaker which results in ...
Emotional neglect includes such actions as marked inattention to the childs needs for affection, refusal of or failure to provide needed psychological care, spouse abuse in the childs presence, and permission of drug or alcohol use by the child. The assessment of child neglect requires consideration of cultural values and standards of care as well as recognition that the failure to provide the necessities of life may be related to poverty. sexual abuse includes fondling a childs genitals, intercourse, incest, rape, sodomy, exhibitionism, and commercial exploitation through prostitution or the production of pornographic materials. It is well to mention that many experts believe that sexual abuse is the most under-reported form of child maltreatment because of the secrecy or conspiracy of silence that so often characterizes these cases. emotional abuse includes acts or omissions by the parents or other caregivers that have caused, or could cause, serious behavioral, cognitive, emotional, or mental disorders. In some cases of emotional abuse, the acts of the parents or other caregivers alone, without any harm evident in the childs behavior or condition, are sufficient to warrant children and family services intervention.
To give an example, the parents or caregivers may use extreme or bizarre forms of punishment, such as handcuffing a child around a tree to spank him or her, or confinement of a child in a dark closet. All to often, less severe acts, such as habitual scapegoating, belittling, or rejecting treatment, are difficult to prove and, therefore , children and family services may not be able to intervene without evidence of harm to the child. Although any of the forms of child maltreatment may be found separately, they almost always occur in combination. Experience in child maltreatment investigations have almost always revealed emotional abuse when other forms are identified. The most important solution to the problem in this writers opinion is, the early recognition of child maltreatment. We as a nation have to recognize early the signs of child maltreatment to prevent the most drastic consequence of child abuse and neglect, which is child fatalities. We must first look at the way a child behaves. Such as showing sudden changes in behavior or school performance. Has learning problems that cannot be attributed to specific physical or psychological causes.
... life. “Child abuse happens when a parent or other adult causes serious physical or emotional harm to a child. The most serious cause of child abuse can end ... caregiver and infant attachment; penalizing a child for demonstrating signs of positive self-esteem; and penalizing a child for using interpersonal skills needed for ...
Is the child always watchful, as though preparing for something bad tom happen. Does the child lack adult supervision, or is the child overly compliant, an overachiever, or too responsible. Does the child come home to early or stays to late, and does not want to go home. These are only a few signs that a child might display. Signs to look for in the childs parents are such things as showing little or no concern for the child, rarely responding to the schools request for information, for conferences, or for home visits. parent denies the existence of or blames the child for the childs problems in school or at home. The parent may even ask the classroom teacher to use harsh physical discipline if the child misbehaves.
Sees the child entirely bad, worthless, or burdensome. Demands perfection or level of physical or academic performance the child can not possibly achieve. The parent may even look primarily to the child for care, attention, and satisfaction of emotional needs. Does the parent and the child rarely touch or look at each other, and consider their relationship entirely negative. They may even state that they do not like each other. You may want to consider the possibility of child abuse when the child has unexplained burns, bites, bites, bruises, broken bones or black eyes. Does the child have fading bruises or other marks noticeable after an absence from school.
Seems frightened of the parents and protests or cries when it is time to go home from daycare or school. Does the child shrink at the approach of adults; or reports injury by a parent or another adult caregiver. Consider the possibility of physical abuse when the parent or other adult caregiver offers conflicting, unconvincing, or no explanation for the childs injury. If the parent describes the child as evil or in some other very negative way. Uses harsh physical discipline with the child, or has a history of child abuse. Some of the signs of child sexual abuse include such symptoms as difficulty in walking or sitting. The child suddenly refuses to change for gym or to participate in physical activities.
“What is child abuse? The term “child abuse” can be defined as any behavior directed toward a child by a parent, guardian, caregiver, other family member, or other adult, that endangers or impairs a child’s physical or emotional health and development” (National 1). Factors which often contribute to child abuse are alcohol and substance abuse, lack of parenting skills, economic ...
Demonstrates bizarre, sophisticated, or unusual sexual knowledge or behavior. Becomes pregnant or contracts a venereal disease, particularly if the child is under the age of fourteen(14).
If the child is a chronic runaway, or reports sexual abuse by a parent or another adult caregiver. These are just a few signs and symptoms that all concerned citizens should become aware of, and acknowledge the responsibility we all have to our nations children. Though most abused children will represent more than just one of the signs and symptoms when they have been abused and neglected, we must be aware of all the factors. We must not forget that are nations children are our most valuable resource!!! U.S. Department of Health and Human services, National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect.
Third National Incidence Study of Child Abuse and Neglect: Final Report (NIS-3) (Washington, DC: Government Printing Office, 1996).
Zuravin, S. (1991).
Research definitions of child abuse and neglect: current problems. The effects of child abuse and neglect: issues and research. New York,