SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4) — April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month, and the Salt Lake City Police Department met together to discuss how they would fight against child abuse in the community.
“Child abuse is one of the most horrific crimes that can happen in our community. It hurts the most vulnerable and defenseless,” SLCPD Chief Mike Brown said.
In a press release from the Salt Lake City Police Department, they said they are committed to aggressively investigating crimes against children and teens.
“It will not be tolerated nor accepted because our community is a place where children can do well, engage in fun, positive activities, and where adults can create safe, stable, and nurturing environments for our children,” SLCPD Chief Mike Brown said.
According to the National Children’s Alliance, more than 600,000 children are abused in the U.S. each year. And in 2020, an estimated 618,000 children were victims of abuse and neglect 2020. The actual number of children abused is likely underreported.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defined the four most common types of abuse and neglect as:
- Physical abuse
- This is the intentional use of physical force. It can also result in physical injury. Examples include hitting, kicking, shaking, burning, or other shows of force against a child.
- Sexual abuse
- This involves pressuring or forcing a child to engage in sexual acts. It includes behaviors such as fondling, penetration, and exposing a child to other sexual activities. Please see CDC’s Preventing Child Sexual Abuse webpage for more information.
- Emotional abuse
- This refers to behaviors that harm a child’s self-worth or emotional well-being. Examples include name-calling, shaming, rejecting, withholding love, and threatening.
- This is the failure to meet a child’s basic physical and emotional needs. These needs include housing, food, clothing, education, access to medical care, and having feelings validated and appropriately responded to.
If you or someone you know is a victim of child abuse or neglect contact the DCFS 24/7 hotline: (855)-323-3237. For more information, visit dcfs.utah.gov.