NAASCA Posters / Essays Celebrating April as National Child Abuse Awareness Month

Child Abuse lives everywhere -- don't be afraid to talk about it
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  Child Abuse lives ..
...... in every community
...... at the end of the hall

The concept of "stranger danger," the admonishment to avoid contact with anyone unknown to a youngster who's offering candy or a ride in their car, has been taught to children for decades, yet few speak of the mostly unavoidable predatory criminals who lurk right under a child's nose.

Its only 7% of the time that a child will be assaulted by a total stranger. Studies show that 93% of the time a child will be sexually assaulted by someone that know, love or are supposed to be able to trust.

An astonishing one third of these predators are immediate family members .. a father, mother, brother or sister .. and one third are extended family members .. mom's boyfriend, grandpa, a cousin or a very close family friend.

The remaining third are commonly caregivers, often the very folks a parent turn a child over to .. teachers, babysitters, ministers, coaches, camp counselors, volunteers at boys and girls clubs .. the list goes on and on.

The bottom line? Kids are FAR more likely to be assaulted by people in their own circle, and most often by a member of their own family.

That's why prevention needs to be taught everywhere, not just at home but in schools, churches, clubs ..

It's unrealistic to expect a six-year-old to fend off sexual advances from an adult relative. Children often cannot recognize sexual advances for what they are, and have been taught to “mind” adults who are authority figures.

Adults are responsible for the safety of children. Adults are the ones who need to prevent, recognize and react responsibly to child sexual abuse.

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