September 02, 2020

The Child Welfare Information Gateway, published it’s 2017 findings, titled: “Child Abuse and Neglect Fatalities 2017: Statistics and Interventions”.  When inquiring into wrongful deaths resulting from child neglect and child abuse the statistics showed the following:

How Many Children Die Each Year From Child Abuse and Neglect? According to data from the National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System (NCANDS), 50 States reported a total of 1,688 fatalities. Based on these data, a nationally estimated 1,720 children died from abuse or neglect in FFY 2017 … This translates to a rate of 2.32 children per 100,000 children in the general population and an average of nearly five children dying every day from abuse or neglect. NCANDS defines “child fatality” as the death of a child caused by an injury resulting from abuse or neglect or where abuse or neglect was a contributing factor. …

How Do These Deaths Occur? Fatal child abuse may involve repeated abuse over a period of time, or it may involve a single, impulsive incident (e.g., drowning, suffocating, shaking a baby). In cases of fatal neglect, the child’s death does not result from anything the caregiver does; rather, it results from a caregiver’s failure to act. The neglect may be chronic (e.g., extended malnourishment) or acute (e.g., an infant who drowns after being left unsupervised in the bathtub). …

‘[Who is liable for these wrongful deaths?]’  In 2017, [n]onparents (including kin and childcare providers, among others) were responsible for 15.2 percent of child fatalities, and child fatalities with unknown perpetrator relationship data accounted for 4.7 percent of the total.”

You can access the entire publication, “Child Abuse and Neglect Fatalities 2017: Statistics and Interventions” here:

Who are Childcare Providers?

In the current economic climate, there is a growing need for both parents to work. With the rise of inflation and an increase in dual income households, daycare programs and childcare services are one of the fastest growing sectors of the US economy. “Childcare” covers a wide range of services, which includes:

  • After school care;
  • Preschool programs;
  • Residential camps;
  • Drop-in care;
  • Day camps;
  • Home-based care;
  • Daycare centers or institution-based care

What is Daycare Neglect or Childcare Abuse?

When parents leave their children under the care of a daycare facility or under the supervision of a childcare provider they trust and assume that their children will be well-taken care of in their absence. Unfortunately, this is not always the case.  Childcare abuse is simply the physical and/or mental abuse of a minor under the care and supervision of a childcare provider.  Childcare abuse can involve one single impulsive incident or can be the repeated and prolonged abuse of a minor by a childcare provider. Alternatively, childcare neglect or daycare neglect results from a childcare provider’s failure to act. Similar to abuse, this can be chronic neglect where a child is unsupervised for a prolonged period of time and not tended to, or acute where a child in unsupervised while left unattended in dangerous conditions.

Childcare neglect is preventable.  Specifically, daycare facilities and childcare providers need to train workers and employees on appropriate childcare practices and follow proper protocol with hiring and training.  Further childcare and daycare facilities must be reasonably safe and secure so that children are protected to the extent possible from injuries and accidents.

What are the Signs of Daycare Neglect or Childcare Abuse?

Absent full 24-hour supervision it is difficult to know if childcare providers are taking appropriate measures and tending to the children’s needs.  For this reason, it is imperative that parents observe and monitor for signs of abuse and neglect.  If a child consistently exhibits emotional outbursts when taken to a childcare facility, coupled with behavioral and/or physical changes, these may be signs that the child is a victim of abuse or neglect.

Behavioral and/or physical changes which may indicate childcare abuse or childcare neglect include:   

  • The child victim may become withdrawn, quiet and often removes him/herself from situations;
  • The child victim exhibits signs for agitation, aggression, anxiety or depression;
  • The child victim exhibits novel volatile behavior;
  • The child victim has regressed in his/her development (i.e., cannot tie their own shoes anymore, cannot dress themselves, potty training regression, diminished vocabulary, novel signs of immaturity, begins wetting the bed)
  • The child victim has bruises, markings or other indications of abuse and neglect on his or her body
  • The child victim acts out sexually
  • The child victim appears dirty, hungry, unkept and/or frazzled after being picked up from the daycare facility

If you suspect that your child was subject to daycare abuse or childcare neglect, you must contact a child injury lawyer promptly for the child’s well-being and seek justice.  Child neglect cases are complex and should be discussed with an experienced child injury attorney.  If you suspect child abuse or child neglect at your child’s childcare facility, please call our offices today to discuss your matter with a seasoned child injury attorney at 619-432-5145.

For further discussions on Daycare Neglect and Daycare Abuse, links are included below::

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