Creating a Safe Place for Children

Posted: November 5, 2019

Recent research conducted by Helton et al. (2019) suggests that over the past several years, there has been a 70% increase in child sexual abuse cases treated in emergency departments. More specifically, the findings indicate that the number of child sexual abuse admissions increased from 5,138 in 2010 to 8,818 in 2016.

Although the findings demonstrate an increase in ER admissions, the research does not explain why this increase is occurring. Perhaps it is because of an increase in child sex trafficking or exploitation, limited options in rural locations to obtain sexual abuse support (Helton et al., 2019), or perhaps it is because of an increase in children disclosing over the past several years. The causal factors are not yet known; but what these findings do tell us, is that we need to listen to children about sexual abuse.

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