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The First 12 are my thoughts, the next 6 are from Victor I Vieth, UNTO THE THIRD GENERATION: a call to end child abuse in the U.S. within 120 years, Journal of Agression, Maltreatment & Trauma

These are efforts that would greatly improve the lives of abused and neglected children. When you speak with decision makers or write letters to your lawmakers, make some of these points:

1. Health care for all children including mental health services and mental health assessments for all children removed from their homes by child protective services will lead to healthier children.

2. Stop prescribing psychotropic medications to children without proper mental health therapies.

3. A greater investment in abuse prevention strategies like home visiting, crisis nurseries, and parental education will lower the number of children in child protection systems.

4. Support for child care and early education (Head Start type programs) will take the burden off of schools and create happier communities with less crime.

5. Increased investment in finding, supporting, and educating foster and adoptive parents with attention paid to recruiting from minority communities will lower the number of children in the Juvenile Justice system.

6. By replacing punishment and incarceration of nonviolent young offenders with programs that work will lower the number of criminals in the criminal justice system and break the cycle of violence and drug abuse that has climbed to such high rates in our communities..

7. Better training, greater resources, and lower caseloads for social workers and mental health workers will give the children in the systems a far better chance to succeed. Better results will pay big dividends to our communities and reduce the future tax burden significantly.

8. Increased investment in programs that deal in GLBT issues, child prostitution, and other dangerous childhood behaviors will save lives and it is the right thing to do.

9. By concentrating investments in those communities that are experiencing the greatest failure rates we get a double return on our money. Those communities will become far more livable for the entire population and at the same time, the cycle of poverty and violence will be greatly reduced.

10. A guardian ad-Litem for every child in child protection with a GAL system that allows personal contact, mentoring, and long term relationships with the children they serve can insure that children don’t fall through the cracks and are not abandoned for the second time.

11. A big brother/big sister program that insures each child in child protection at least one long-term adult relationship in their life will serve the child as an anchor that will help them in their stuggle to lead a normal life.

12. By ending Child homelessness and children living with untreated mentally ill or drug addicted parents a large percentage of those conditions that lead to abuse and neglect will have been eliminated. This will prove to be a savings to us when the children go on to lead normal lives.

Victor Vieth;

13. Every suspected case of child abuse will be reported and every report will be of a high quality.

14. Every child reported into the system will be interviewed by someone who can competently interview a child about abuse and the investigation of all child abuse allegations will likewise be competently completed.

15. Every substantiated case of egregious child abuse must be proseccuted by a child abuse prosectutor skilled at handling these complex, special cases.

16. Every CPS worker will be competent to investigate and work with child abuse victims and their families from day one.

17. Every CPS worker will be a community leader skilled in the art of prevention.

18. Every child protection worker, guardian ad-Litem, and attorney will have access to national trainings, publications, and technical assistance.

Support abused and neglected children, start a KARA group in your community

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