masthead: In Focus: Child Abuse NCJRS acronym/logo with text: National Criminal Justice Reference Service

Child maltreatment is a broad term that covers all types of abuse and neglect of a child under the age of 18 by a parent, caregiver, or another person in a custodial role, such as a coach or teacher.

In 2015, more than three million children were the subject of an investigation or similar response by child protective services, resulting in nearly 700,000 reported victims of child abuse and neglect.

The negative consequences of child maltreatment are wide-ranging. Maltreatment is associated with lower school achievement, juvenile delinquency, substance abuse, and mental health problems. Abuse can result in long-term physical, social, and emotional problems, or death.

Despite the violence and abuse that some youth may have already experienced in their short lives, children are resilient. Every person in a child's life can play a role in helping to protect them and help them heal.

During National Child Abuse Prevention Month (April 2017), access the Child Abuse Special Feature for topical information and access to OJP and other federal resources.

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Who is considered a mandatory reporter of child abuse, including child sexual abuse/exploitation?
Individuals typically designated as mandatory reporters of child abuse, including child sexual ...  Read More

Where can I locate statistics on child abuse and neglect in the United States?
Statistics on child abuse and neglect are available in the Department of Health and Human … Read More

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Events

Child Abuse and Neglect Institute
June 12-16, 2017 | Reno, NV
Crimes Against Children Conference
August 7-10, 2017 | Dallas, TX
National Child Welfare, Juvenile & Family Law Conference
August 10-12, 2017 | New Orleans, LA

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Funding

Changing Minds: Professional Development and Public Education To Address Children Exposed to Violence and Childhood Trauma | Apply by: 5/2/2017

Research and Evaluation in Safety, Health, and Wellness in the Criminal Justice System | Apply by: 5/8/2017

Vision 21: Linking Systems of Care for Children and Youth State Demonstration Project | Apply by: 5/11/2017

VOCA Training and Technical Assistance for Child Abuse Professions | Apply by: 5/11/2017

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Publications

Children's Exposure to Violence, Crime, and Abuse: An Update

Enhanced Resource Guidelines: Improving Court Practice in Child Abuse and Neglect Cases

Through Our Eyes: Children, Violence, and Trauma

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Related Resources

Changing Minds

Model Programs Guide: Abuse/Maltreatment/Neglect

NIJ: Children Exposed to Violence

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NCJRS Federal Sponsors

Office of Justice Programs (OJP)

Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA)

Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS)

National Institute of Justice (NIJ)

Office for Victims of Crime (OVC)

Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP)

Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking (SMART)