Child abuse prevention should happen every month, not just April

Far too often, innocent children are subjected to neglect and abuse from parents, relatives and other adults in their lives. Individuals who are supposed to provide care and support may instead deprive children of their needs and physically, mentally and sexually abuse those children. The victims of child abuse and neglect often struggle to comes to terms with what has happened and move forward in their lives. 

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month. New Mexico and other states across the country often implement activities and awareness programs to bring attention to the substantial problem that is child abuse. Frequently, children are subjected to abusive behaviors, and the people around them do not even know that it is happening. This month, various agencies and program organizers work to bring this often invisible issue to the forefront and to find ways to lessen the chances of abuse taking place. 

Though this is the designated month for such awareness, individuals should be on the lookout for signs of child abuse at all times. In some cases, the effects of child abuse and trauma can show themselves in the following ways: 

  • Behavioral issues, which could include acting out, withdrawing or showing aggression 
  • Cognitive issues, such as an inability to pay attention or having reactions that do not suit a particular scenario 
  • Physical issues, such as bruising, broken bones, lacerations or other physical signs of abuse 

Unfortunately, child abuse can come in many forms, and all forms can cause lasting traumatic effects. If New Mexico parents or other adults believe that their children, students or other kids have suffered sexual abuse, learning how to address the situation properly is necessary. In some cases, victims or parents of victims may be able to take legal action against abusers in efforts to seek justice for the harm done.