Child abuse stats make sobering reading
Mon, 22 Aug 2011 3:06p.m.
It is estimated approximately 15 percent of children are born at risk of abuse, and over 80,000 children witness family violence each year, according to the Child Protection Services (CPS).
This makes New Zealand’s child abuse rate one of the worst in the world.
The number of recorded family violence cases is increasing rapidly. This does not necessarily mean more family violence cases are happening, but police are now making a stronger effort to record them.
Currently, New Zealand Police have over 6,000 child abuse cases open. The statistics in relation to child abuse over the last ten years are harrowing.
Between 2000 and 2004, 39 children were murdered due to family violence related incidents. In 63.4 per cent of these murders, the perpetrator was male.
Often in child abuse cases people assume the perpetrator is male, but in 2 out of 5 instances, this is not the case. In the last few years, violent attacks on children by women have been on the rise.
According to the Ministry of Social Development’s 2005 Social Report there are at least twenty confirmed cases of child abuse and/or neglect in New Zealand every day, resulting in an average of seven deaths due to child abuse every year.
In 2008, 74,785 children were found at family violence incidents when police were called. Each of those children have suffered emotional, and potentially physical, harm. For a large number of these children, they are given no support post-incident to overcome the emotions they are faced with.
A fourteen year old girl who suffered physical abuse from her father until the age of twelve stated, “I never wanted to come home after school. I would hear my parents yelling at each other at night time, and I would have to look after my little brother and keep him safe.”
Fortunately, the girl, who wishes to remain anonymous, her younger brother and their mother were able to escape the grasps of their father before any serious damage was made. However, both the children have received counselling to overcome the emotional distress bought on by the years of abuse.
“We were very lucky to get away when we did.”
Statistics from the report make worrying reading:
Children are getting emotionally, physically and sexually abused and approximately 4,500 children are being neglected each year. These children are not receiving the care and emotional support required for normal healthy development. This could impact their lives in years to come.
Campaigns such as ‘Extra Ordinary Dads’ and ‘Many Voices, One Purpose’, instigated by JIGSAW, a New Zealand organisation that focuses on the wellbeing of children, are bringing together people from across the country for one cause – to bring about a beautiful future for our children.
Organisations such as JIGSAW are also helping parents to learn strategies which allow them to become better role models for their children, and reduce the unnecessary violence seen in so many New Zealand homes.
Margot Shanahan is working with UNICEF as part of the 3Youth project, an upcoming section of the 3 News website focusing on social issues and written by young people.
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6/04/2013 3:16:33 p.m.
This really helped me with my assignment in school. Thank You.
Its so sad to see the lives of these children taken over by abuse. Seeing NZ with highest rate of child abuse is embarrassing to be honest.
31/08/2012 9:14:15 p.m.
also doing a speech on child abuse and this is a lot of help thanks
29/08/2012 2:15:55 p.m.
i am also doing a speech on child abuse for level 3 english ! loads of hepl thank you
27/08/2012 7:58:15 p.m.
karamu age 12 wrote:
so sad does anyone agree with me
22/08/2012 10:35:02 a.m.
im doing a speech on child abuse this site has really helped me alot thanks . xoxoxox
7/08/2012 10:41:15 a.m.
i am doing a speech on child abuse and this site has helped thanks. xoxoxo =)
26/07/2012 7:51:11 p.m.
It is so sad to see so many kids hurt or worse it breaks my heart
23/07/2012 10:37:38 a.m.
Eilish Smith wrote:
This really helped me with a school report I was doing, comparing a novel to today's world. Thank-you so much for the help. :)
22/07/2012 8:05:55 p.m.
Jennifer Z wrote:
I'm doing a speech on child abuse and this was the greatest help! Thank you Margot and on behalf of all youth in New Zealand I would like to thank you for helping us. XOXO
18/07/2012 6:30:03 p.m.
dhaval patel wrote:
this is really good and whoever will read it,so they might take some advise and behave well with them children and it's helpful for young generation will be able to take and give advise and use it in them real life and love them children more as possible.they would not get them child to fill like they are dog or they won't get them emotionally and sexually abuse.
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