Wednesday, October 19, 2011

A Focus on Innovative Programs that Intervene Early on in Children’s Lives Must Continue


CHICAGO, IL., October 19, 2011- In response to a report this week by BBC World News America titled America’s “Child Death Shame”and comparisons between child abuse and neglect and American soldiers lost in Iraq, Jim Hmurovich, President and CEO, of Prevent Child Abuse America, released the following statement:

"This report calls attention to the consequences of our failure to ensure that all children have an equal opportunity for healthy growth and development. Fortunately, we know how to do better. Because a third of children reported as abused or neglected are children under four years of age, we are focusing on innovative programs that intervene early on. It may be accurate as the BBC reports that ‘More kids killed in their own homes in the US than soldiers in Iraq,’ but using this approach to prevention, we are confident we can reduce that number significantly.

“The challenge of investing in innovative programming focused on services such as home visiting and Shaken Baby Syndrome prevention is even more apparent and necessary in these difficult economic times. It's easy during tough times to minimize the importance of such services – however its times like these that it’s more important than ever with the additional stress on parents, teachers and other members of the community who play a role in child development.

"Further, this report demonstrates that continued investment in prevention services is absolutely necessary. These programs help lay strong foundations for children’s later growth and development, which will reduce the possibility of more serious, and expensive, problems from developing later, resulting in lifelong effects on physical and mental health.

“Parents, teachers and community members depend on the support of these services and that's why Prevent Child Abuse America helped found the National Movement for America's Children. We're working to create a National Strategy for America's Children, to ensure that policies and programs are put in place and maintained to provide every child in America with an equal opportunity for a healthy childhood and development.

"The BBC report raises many important points, yet, absent from the discussion is the question of how we, as a nation and a society, prioritize the critical economic importance of healthy child development for all children."


Prevent Child Abuse America, founded in 1972, works to ensure the healthy development of children nationwide while recognizing that child development is a building block for community development and economic development. We believe that communities across the country are doing innovative things with great results to prevent abuse and neglect from everoccurring, and what we need to do as a nation is commit to bringing this kind of ingenuity to communities everywhere. Based in Chicago, Prevent Child Abuse America has chapters in 47 states and 387 Healthy FamiliesAmerica sites in 36 states.

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