Child abuse is the term used when an adult harms a child or a young person.
There are aspects of child abuse that are subjective (for example, some people think ear piercing is child abuse, whilst others think the very idea that it is abusive is ridiculous). There are other aspects that are generally universally considered to be abusive.
Child abuse can take many forms, including:
- Physical Abuse – Including, but not limited to: Hitting, kicking, slapping, burning, shaking, throwing, pinching, drugging.
- Emotional Abuse – Including, but not limited to: Name calling, put downs, blame, humiliation, constant deconstructive critisism, isolating a child.
- Sexual Abuse – Exploiting a child in any way for sexual gratification, inclusing, but not limited to: rape, molestation, pornography (forcing to make/partake)
- Neglect – Including, but not limited to: Not providing food/shelter/appropriate clothing, failure to seek appropriate medical care, failure to provide an education, failure to provide a secure and hygienic environment, leaving a child unattended.
- Domestic Violence – A child can become emotionally/physically harmed as a result of dometic vilence between care-givers.
- Bullying – Ususally takes place between children, in a school or play setting, and can include physical/emotional/sexual abuse.
ALL children deserve to feel loved, secure and to have the opportunity to develop healthily and safely. All children must be protected from abuse and kept safe from all types of harm.
As part of our responsibility to children, we can familiarize ourselves with the signs of abuse so we are better prepared when we are worried about children in suspected danger.
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