Family Law Prof Blog

Editor: Margaret Ryznar
Indiana University
Robert H. McKinney School of Law

Friday, April 3, 2020

Increase in Child Abuse & Neglect Amid Covid-19

From USA Today:

Hundreds of thousands of vulnerable U.S. children could face a heightened risk of abuse and neglect as coronavirus-related school closures keep them at home and away from the nation’s biggest group of hotline tipsters: educators. 

Teachers, administrators, school counselors and other educational professionals report one in every five child-mistreatment claims in the nation, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Other major sources include law enforcement and social workers. 

Those reports could plummet, experts predict, as children’s social circles contract to just family members, which collectively represent just 12% of hotline calls.

Even kids in otherwise functional families could face peril as parents unaccustomed to providing round-the-clock care and stressed by the collapsing economy are pushed to the edge. 

Some experts, like Sophie Phillips, chief executive officer of TexProtects, a Texas-based child abuse prevention advocacy group, fear that parents still required to work outside the home may leave children on their own.

Read more here.

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