Fight fire with fire! If you have heard this saying before then you can somewhat guess where we are going. Child abuse has been around for thousands of years. Yet it was not until the early 20th century that theorists began to understand what was child appropriate and what wasn’t. However, more often than not most if not all people become parents with a vague sense of what it actually takes to raise one, two, or several children.
In 2015, a student of the University Colorado published a thesis on why the government should acquire a license before being allowed to raise a child. It was modeled under Hugh Lafollette’s 1980 article “Licensing Parents.” In both essays, it stated that the licensing program will be modeled after the processes.
In Illinois the adoption is as follows:
An agency will want the parents to do a criminal background check as well as get fingerprinted.
Social Worker come to the house to make sure you have adequate space for a child (or children)
Future adoptive parents will need to get a physical and get documentation
Will need to attend to 39 hours of training
The entire process takes three to six months to complete
The process of obtaining a parenting license is fairly similar.
In his essay, Hugh argues “If a practice or act has a potential to cause harm, requires a minimum standard of competency, and there is a reliable way to determine competency, the practice or act should be licensed.”
If we use the same framework as the adoption agencies, we can create a licensing system that will be more beneficial to children and allow for more competent parents. This law does not take away the freedom to practice religion, how children will be educated, but it will teach parents the basics of what it takes to raise a child.
In a Licensing program, Parents will undergo training on how to build their “parenting toolbox.”
They will be able to learn the following:
A child’s developmental need from infancy to adolescence
Child Psychology: how a child’s mind develops from infancy to adolescence.
How to effectively budget your money to take of a child’s needs
Signing of help if needed: “WIC, SNAP, ABE, etc.”
Learning about Maslow’s Heirarchy of Needs,
Effective disciplinary methods
Effective methods to help couple communicate their needs to each other
Mental health methods to use during very stressful times in a child’s life
A few courses in special education to give them a head start on what may happen in case their child is a special needs kid
A course on mindfulness and self-reflection for parents
“It takes a Village to Raise A Child: Create your village”
It is very hard to mentally and physically prepare for taking care of a child or children. Yet when one is able to get a physical picture of what it will be like, parents can better prepare for themselves. Granted children are very unpredictable and life happens. Yet as teachers are trained to expect the worst of the worst as well as the best of the best, parents should be as well. Which, is why an extensive program will be created to help future parents learn the basics of what it takes to raise a child.
It is one thing to read a book, take a test, and flaunt a piece of paper that says you know what you’re doing. It’s something totally different when that training becomes a reality that lasts the rest of you life.
Do you have what it takes?
Can you be part of the solution that helps keep our children safe?
The cost of Child abuse is heavy; both in terms of financial and non-financial. In this post we will look at the financial cost of Child Abuse. Over one million children are affected by abuse and neglect every year. That annual cost of all cases reported is estimated to be $9.3 billion.
The lifetime cost per death of a female victim is estimated as $1.1 million while for males its estimated at $1.5 million.
The lifetime cost for each victim of child maltreatment who lived is $210,012
You are a preschool teacher at a daycare center. You are a certified mandated reporter. Kate, one of your students, came into school one day with bruises on her arms. You seemed suspicious that day because she wasn’t interacting with her peers like she normally does. That weekend, Kate was staying with her mother. She usually stays with her father, but her father occasionally leaves out of town for work. You went up to Kate and asked her how she got those bruises. She did not respond. You asked her if you can take a look at her legs to make sure she doesn’t have any “boo boos” on her leg. As you lifted up her pants, you seen more bruises on her leg. You immediately reported what you seen on Kate’s body to your supervisor. Your supervisor called DCFS and they created a claim on the report. DCFS contacted Kate’s parents and concluded that Kate’s mom has been abusing her while she was staying with her. Kate’s father had no clue what was going on, until DCFS was involved.
Who are they? DCFS is the Department of Children and Family Services. It is a government funded agency that works with the police, aiming to help children who have been neglected or abused and to help prevent them.
DCFS provides safe, permanent homes as quickly as possible for children who cannot go back to their homes.
DCFS works with Mandated Reporters in creating investigations on children who need help from abuse or neglect. After a Mandated Reporter calls DCFS, they will then further investigate on the claim. Once the claim is made, DCFS will then take the child in custody, away from harm, until they decide whether or not the child is safe enough to go back to their home.
What is a Mandated Reporter? A person who is legally required to report any suspicions of abuse or neglect towards a child to authorities due to their profession.
A Mandated Reporter are required to make a call to DCFS within 48 hours of the time they suspect neglect or abuse towards a child. They must then complete a form called CY-47, which is a report that is made for suspected child abuse.
What happens if a Mandated Reporter does not report any suspicions towards neglect or abuse of a child? If a Mandated Reporter fails to make a call on any suspicions they have, it can be considered neglect under general civil laws. They will then be liable for any damage caused for failing to report their duties as a Mandated Reporter. They may also receive fines, jail time, or both for failure to report. In some states, jail time can potentially be up to 6 months in jail, while fines can be up to $1,000. Penalties can also be accounted for those who make false claims or reports.
To become a Mandated Reporter, training is available online, with a certificate that can be printed out at the end of the training with a passing assessment on a persons’ knowledge on becoming a Mandated Reporter.
Why is being a Mandated Reporter so important? It protects children in your care as a caregiver, or as an education practitioner, from any sort of abuse and/or neglect that can cause them any sort of severe or major harm.
Statistics show that households that have parents or caregivers who suffer through alcohol abuse, emotional distress such as anger issues, or substance abuse of any sort have a higher probability of child abuse compared to households that do not.
Statistics also show that one in four girls and one in eight boys are sexually abused by their parents or caregivers before the age of 18.
As well, one in twenty children are physically abused each year.
In the United States, 700,000 children experience abuse each year.
With data, statistics show that in 2015, an estimated reported number of 683,000 children were victims of neglect or abuse.
According to Children’s Advocacy Center, they have served more than 311,000 children in 2014 in the United States. Of those children, 26% of them were between the ages of 13-17, 37% were between the ages of 7-12, and 37% of them were between the ages of birth through 6.
The Children’s Advocacy Center declared that people who were investigated for abuse under the age of 13 was 10%, ages 13-17 was 13%, and over the age of 18 is 77%.
They also declared that the relationships to the victim is 51% from a relative to the child, 39% from a parent to that child, and 10% from someone who is not family, but is known to the child.
Statistics also show that of those alleged to abuse children, a quarter of them are children themselves.