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April is Child Abuse Prevention Month
April is Child Abuse Prevention Month, a time to focus on the protection and care of our most vulnerable and trusting resources -- our children.
Child Abuse Prevention Month has been observed each April since its first presidential proclamation in 1983. Since that time, individuals and organizations have joined during April to raise the public’s awareness of child abuse and its prevention.
More than 264,000 Texas children are reported as abused or neglected and nearly 67,000 confirmed victims in 2010, according to Child Protective Services, a division of the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services. April is Child Abuse Prevention Month in Texas and in the nation.
“It’s a time to focus on ways not only to protect children but also to prevent abuse from ever occurring,” said Wendell Teltow, executive director for Prevent Child Abuse Texas. “This is our opportunity to make a difference in young lives.”
Neglect is the most frequent form of child abuse, according to the state agency charged with protecting children.
“Yes, children die simply because they’re put in situations where they are not supervised,” Teltow said. “But parents are not alone. We need to raise the public’s awareness of these distressing statistics,” Teltow said, “and to encourage people to become involved in the prevention of child abuse. One small, but public way of showing your support, is wearing a blue ribbon during April. Remember, children are helpless, you are not.”
According to Prevent Child Abuse America, 43 percent of American parents report spanking or hitting their child, 37 percent report insulting or swearing at their child, and 2 percent report having kicked, bitten, or punched their child. More than 3 million children are reported to child protective service agencies as alleged victims of child abuse or neglect each year, and approximately 1 million of these reports are confirmed.
Prevent Child Abuse Texas is a statewide nonprofit organization dedicated to the prevention of child abuse and neglect in all its forms. Its network works in a collaborative manner with community, state, and national groups to turn information into action by developing sound child and family oriented community-based prevention programs, public awareness activities, educational initiatives, and training programs.
For more information, call 1-800-CHILDREN or visit www.preventchildabusetexas.org.
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