April is Child Abuse Prevention Month
When parents get help, there's hope for kids!
For Immediate Release: April 1, 2014
Contact: DFPS Media Specialists
Child Protective Services (CPS) investigated more than 160,000 allegations of child abuse or neglect in Texas last year. 156 children died at the hands of their parents or other caregivers, 66,398 were victims of abuse or neglect, and more than 17,000 had to be removed from their homes for their own protection.
Each April, CPS and its parent agency, the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS), join hands with local governments, community groups, service organizations, activists, and average citizens to put the spotlight on preventing, recognizing, and reporting child abuse.
Governor Rick Perry proclaimed April as Child Abuse Prevention Month, and all across Texas CPS is joining local governments, community groups, service organizations, activists, and others to put the spotlight on preventing, recognizing, and reporting child abuse. Read the Governor's proclamation.
"While stopping abuse after it happens is critical, it's not enough. We need to stop it before it starts," said DFPS Commissioner John Specia. "Many of the parents CPS works with are young, some are poor, and almost all of them are under stress and need some kind of help. Helping parents is one of the keys to preventing child abuse!"
That's why DFPS' Help for Parents, Hope for Kids campaign educates parents about child abuse and points them to help in their communities to strengthen their parenting skills and learn to better care for their kids. The campaign's Facebook page (HelpandHopeKids) shares fun and helpful ideas and resources for families, and anyone can download the 2014 Child Abuse Prevention Calendar from HelpandHope.org (in both English and Spanish).
The campaign website, HelpandHope.org, features a number of inspiring testimonials of parents who overcame abuse to become better parents and break the cycle of abuse. These videos are also available on the DFPS You Tube Channel.
"I encourage everyone who cares about children to watch and share these powerful stories, especially with parents who are having a hard time", said Commissioner Specia. "But, if you suspect abuse is already happening, please report it."
- 7,159,172 # of children in Texas
- 160,240 # of completed CPS investigations
- 66,398 # confirmed victims of child abuse or neglect
- 17,022 # of children removed from their homes due to abuse or neglect
- 156 # of abuse/neglect child deaths
- 22,164 # families served by DFPS prevention programs
- 44,828 # of youth served by DFPS prevention programs
See the DFPS Annual Report and Data Book on the DFPS website for more statistics.