Thursday, January 19, 2006

Prevent Child Abuse Deaths

In yesterday’s note I mention that the community must step up, be educated and do something to prevent suicide deaths and attempts. I am a firm believer that the community has a role in so many issues (not to get political, but my campaign committee is even Community for Keller- the Coroner is an elected office). Most pertinent to this blog is the role the community plays in preventing and/or forestalling death. I bumped into another one today.

I was looking through the most recent Annual Report of the Illinois Child Death Review Team (I have just been appointed to the local regional Team) and came across a Team recommendation pertinent to community involvement in death prevention. It sounds like a great idea to me and I do/would heartily support it. The recommendation was that “DCFS (Dept of Child and Family Services) should do a community awareness campaign “If only one person had called the hotline, this child could be alive today””. Yes there are “mandatory reporters”, like doctors, nurses, police, teachers, etc, but I support the notion that everyone/anyone aware that a child is being abused or neglected ought to report that knowledge to the authorities. Even one child dying from abuse or neglect (or experiencing abuse or neglect) is one too many. For each one of us (as Scrooge came to realize) humankind is our business. We should, each one of us, work toward that purpose of making humankind and their preventable deaths our business, particularly those most in need of protection (those unable to protect themselves- young and old). In Illinois call 1 800 25 ABUSE (1 800 252 2873). Want more info? Prevent Child Abuse

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