National Child Abuse Prevention Month: How you can make a difference
April is National Child Abuse Prevention month, bringing attention to an issue that so many face.
LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) — April is National Child Abuse Prevention month, bringing attention to an issue that so many face.
“Sometimes people say, no, this isn’t happening in my community, or this isn’t happening in my school or in my church. It’s happening everywhere,” Angela Roeber, the Director of Communications for Project Harmony, said.
One in seven. That’s how many children are effected by child abuse and neglect according to Dosomething.org.
Child advocates across Nebraska say this is a month to educate yourself so you can protect those suffering from abuse or neglect.
“If you see a child with pattern like bruising, and if you see an infant or a little one that’s not crawling or walking yet, and they have bruises or injuries that is always suspicious. If they’re not cruising, they shouldn’t be bruising,” Jamie Vetter, the Executive Director of Family Advocacy Network, said.
With Nebraska being a mandatory reporting state, every person is required to report any signs of abuse or neglect, no matter how big or small.
“When I talk about reporting, it is suspect in good faith. If you suspect a child’s being neglected, sexually abused, physically abused, or in a frug endangered environment, you have that duty to report. You don’t have to witness it, you have to suspect it,” Vetter said.
Although teachers are the number one reporters when it comes to abuse or neglect, advocates stress the importance of talking with children if you feel something is going on, because it can happen to anyone.
“Stand up and be someone in the life of a child, they’re depending on you to make that call and to help keep them safe and protected,” Roeber said.
There numerous types of child abuse or neglect, to learn more about how to spot the signs of abuse or neglect or how to report it you can visit Project Harmony, The Family Advocacy Network, or The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services. You can also call the Child Abuse and Neglect hotline in Nebraska at (800)-652-1999.