Record number of child abuse referrals at Spartanburg Children’s Advocacy Center
SPARTANBURG, SC – If walls could talk, the ones at the Children’s Advocacy Center could tell stories of kids devastated by abuse.
“Having a little girl ask, am I still a virgin? Is anybody going to want to marry me after what’s happened?”
Executive Director Suzy Cole said in 2015, they saw a record number of child abuse referrals and are on track for another record this year.
“We want them to learn that what happens to them happens to lots of kids. They’re going to be okay, they’re not damaged. This wasn’t their fault.”
“What we think it means is we’re doing a better job in this community of reporting abuse to authorities.”
She says a study revealed thousands of South Carolina professionals felt they did not get adequate training in the past.
“Our law enforcement folks are better trained on what to look for child abuse. Also, our teachers are better trained than they’ve ever been before.”
She also says the passing of Erin’s Law is bringing the lesson of sex abuse into the classroom.
“It’s a law that requires child sexual abuse prevention education in our schools, so all kids K through 12 will have an age appropriate lesson about touching,” she said. “I spoke to one child in the lobby one morning. She said well we heard at school about a little girl who told about some touching that was happening to her and it made things better for her so I thought I would tell.”
She says more referrals mean more opportunities to start helping these kids piece their lives together through therapy.
“A lot of times you can see the hope that is come through in those drawings from being in a dark place to a brighter, more hopeful place.”
The Children’s Advocacy Center serves Spartanburg, Cherokee, and Union counties.
1 – I CHECK FIRST with my parents, guardians, or other trusted adults before going anywhere, helping anyone, accepting anything, or getting into a car.
2 – I TAKE A FRIEND with me when going places or playing outside.
3 – I TELL people “NO” if they try to touch me or hurt me. It’s OK
for me to stand up for myself.
4 – I TELL my trusted adult if anything makes me feel sad, scared,
Sometimes there are people who trick or hurt others. No one has the right to do that to you. So use these rules, and remember you are STRONG, are SMART, and have the right to be SAFE.
TAKE A FRIEND
TELL PEOPLE “NO” IF THEY TRY TO TOUCH YOU OR HURT YOU
TELL AN ADULT YOU TRUST IF ANYTHING HAPPENS
KidSmartz is a child safety program that educates families about preventing abduction and empowers kids in grades K-5 to practice safer behaviors. This program offers resources to help parents, caregivers, and teachers protect kids by teaching and practicing the 4 Rules of Personal Safety using tips, printable activities, quizzes, articles, music, videos, and more.
Malnourished Longmont teen’s dad charged with child abuse, neglect
Denver, CO – A Longmont father faces charges following the hospitalization of his malnourished 17-year-old blind and autistic son, who was considered by doctors last week to be in a condition similar to a concentration camp survivor.
David Lawrence Hall, 52, appeared free on $50,000 bond Friday at the Boulder County Jail to be formally charged with one count of child abuse resulting in serious bodily injury and one count of negligent serious bodily injury to an at-risk person. Both are felonies.
He sat beside his wife, Vanessa, also, 52, who is expected to make her first formal court appearance Sept. 20, according to the Boulder County District Attorney’s Office.
A preliminary hearing — when the court will determine if there is enough evidence for the case to go to trial — was set for Oct. 27.
The couple said they had no comment about their son’s condition and directed questions to their attorney as they left the jail courtroom Friday afternoon.
According to court records, the teen — who apparently subsisted on a diet of soda and cracker snacks, and used a bedside jug for his bathroom — was suffering from severe malnutrition and kidney failure when he was taken to Longmont United Hospital on Aug. 30 and later transferred to an Aurora hospital.