LONGVIEW, Texas (KETK) — April is Child Abuse Prevention Month, and Texas is ranked 40th in child welfare in the country.
The Zonta Club of Longview met to focus on child abuse prevention. A presentation was given by Buckner Longview Children and Family Services.
Child abuse can come in many forms: verbal, physical, and sexual exploitation. Just recently, a Tyler man was accused of kidnapping a 13-year-old girl from Alabama after meeting her online. Police say he sexually assaulted her.
Experts say education is the best way to prevent this from happening.
“Through prevention it helps everybody. It helps your community become a better place and keeping those children from being in those vulnerable circumstances,” said Shelly Smith, with Buckner Longview Children and Family Services.
Experts say most cases come from households where drugs are used. Back in 2019, Texas reported more than 67,000 thousand confirmed cases of child abuse and neglect.
Buckner has several programs designed to help teach families on how to prevent child abuse, by reducing risk factors in the homes through coaching and counseling.
East Texans can also help by taking part in child abuse prevention events.
April 25 is Blue Sunday, which is a day of prayer for abused and neglected children.
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