7 Steps to Protect Our Children

1. LEARN THE FACTS

  • It is likely that you know a child who has been or is being abused.
  • It is also likely that you know an abuser. The greatest risk to children doesn’t come from strangers but from friends and family.
  • 70% of all reported sexual assaults that occur are children under the age of 17.
  • Most child victims never report the abuse.

2. MINIMIZE OPPORTUNITY

  • Eliminate or reduce any 1 adult/1 child situations.
  • Teach boundaries.
  • Monitor internet use & keep the computer in the family room.

3. TALK ABOUT IT

  • Children often keep abuse a secret, but barriers can be broken down by talking openly about it.
  • Understand why children are afraid to “tell.”
  • Know how children communicate.
  • Talk to other adults about child sexual abuse.

4. STAY ALERT

  • Watch for physical and emotional signs (listed above).
  • Behavioral or emotional signals are more common than physical signs.
  • Be aware that in some children there are no signs ever.

5. MAKE A PLAN

  • Don’t overreact.
  • Support.
  • Report incident.

6. ACT ON SUSPICIONS

  • Trust your instincts – very few reported incidents are false.
  • Call the Children’s Advocacy Center in your area if you have questions or concerns about making a report.
  • Call Law Enforcement or the Department of Child & Family Services to make a report of child abuse.

7. GET INVOLVED

  • Volunteer or financially support organizations that address child sexual abuse.
  • Call or write your Congressman.
  • Support legislation.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, VISIT: WWW.D2L.ORG or click HERE for a printable brochure. This information has been provided by the Hearts of Hope Education Director, Val Senegal.