From the office of Logan County State's Attorney Jonathan Wright
April is National Child Abuse Awareness Month

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[April 28, 2017] LINCOLN -  A civilized society is marked by several traits. One of such trait is the protection of those that are unable to protect themselves. April is National Child Abuse Awareness month and it signals a call to rededicate ourselves to protect the children of our community.

The month of awareness draws our attention to the need. In 2015, 110,098 children were reported as abused or neglected in the State of Illinois. In that same year, 380 children in Logan County were reported as abused or neglected. Of those 380 Logan County children, 152 children were indicated by the Department of Children and Family Services as abused or neglected. As of January 31, 2017, 62 children in Logan County were placed outside of their home in foster care, relative care, or group home settings.

As parents, we can be reminded of some basic parenting suggestions from child abuse prevention programs:

1. Never discipline your child when you are upset. Give yourself time to calm down and remember that discipline is a tool to teach your child.

2. Remember that abuse is not just physical. Words and actions can inflict deep and lasting wounds.

As parents, we can also be reminded of steps to protect our children from abuse at the hands of others:

1. Always know your child’s activities and the people with whom they are involved.

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2. Ensure that organizations, groups, and teams that your child is involved with minimize one-on-one time between children and adults.

3. Make sure your child knows they can talk to you about anything that bothers or confuses them.

Protecting the children of our community is not necessarily limited, however, to parents. If you desire to answer the call to protect, get involved in your community leadership or invest in vulnerable children and their families. If you witness a child being harmed or see evidence of abuse, or if a child tells you about abuse, make a report to the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services at 800-25-ABUSE or report it to your local police department.

April is National Child Abuse Awareness month. The month is coming to a close but our vigilance to protect our community’s greatest asset should not.

[Jonathan C. Wright
Logan County State’s Attorney]


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