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Articles Tagged with child abuse

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Professor Daniel PollackChild Protective Services mission is to protect children from all forms of physical and emotional abuse, sexual abuse, exploitation and neglect. It is a very powerful agency. In New York, CPS can remove children from their parents if “a single incident of excessive corporal punishment is sufficient to support a finding of neglect” (Matter of Eliora B. [Kennedy B.], 146 AD3d 772, 773, 45 N.Y.S.3d 144).”

In a recent commentary in the New York Law Journal, Daniel Pollack MSW, Esq., a professor at Yeshiva University’s School of Social Work in New York City and Christine M. Sarteschi, an  Associate Professor of Social Work and Criminology at Chatham University in Pittsburgh, PA ask if removing the child is sometimes more traumatizing than leaving the child at home? In other words, is Child Protective Services (CPS) knowingly, legally – yet ironically – committing an acknowledged act of child maltreatment that is more detrimental than the original act for which the parents were “substantiated”? To use the vernacular, is CPS sometimes taking children out of the frying pan and consciously placing them into the fire? Such removals are not in the best interest of the child. Unspoken, but quietly acknowledged, is that the child may be removed because CPS is concerned about its own liability more than it is concerned about the long-term safety of the child.

Read the commentary here

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Professor Daniel PollackFrom sexual abuse to physical or emotional abuse as well as maltreatment and neglect, child abuse can have various forms. It occurs when a parent or a caregiver causes injury or death to a child because of his or her action or failing to act.

Very often child abuse is discovered and reported by people surrounding the child. Each State has laws requiring “Mandated Reporters” to report concerns of child abuse. In New York, some professionals such as doctors, nurses, social workers, emergency healthcare workers, dentists, medical examiners coroners and other medical professionals are mandated to report any suspicion of child abuse.  Therapists and mental health counselors  as well as anyone working in the education system as well as police officers and district attorneys and some people working with them such as investigators are mandated to report any suspicion of child abuse.

Sometimes however, mandated reporters hesitate to report suspicion of child abuse. In a recent article, Dr. Michaela A. Medved, MA, TSSLD, CCC-SLP, ClinScD, a Clinical Assistant Professor at Yeshiva University’s Katz School of Science and Health in New York City and Daniel Pollack, MSW, Esq., a professor at Yeshiva University’s School of Social Work in New York City  explains why some mandated reporters hesitate in reporting their suspicions. They found in a previous study that reporters are more reluctant to report their concerns when the abuse is mild or less apparent or experienced by children with disabilities.

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Lori-KornblumProfessorDanielPollackIf you are working with children or near children on regular basis you may witness behaviors that may indicate that a child suffers abuse.

In a recent article, Lori S. Kornblum, an adjunct faculty member at Marquette University Law School focusing on child abuse and the law and Daniel Pollack a professor at the school of social work at Yeshiv University in New York write about signs that indicate that a child might be abused and how to deal with it.

If a child is engaging in abnormal sexual play such as humping another child or putting a doll  next to the genital area of another child it might be a sign that the child is being abused.  If this happens it is important not to react emotionally to the child’s behavior as he or she might just shut down and you might never be able to find out about the abuse. Try to develop a relationship with the child and gain his or her trust. When the child feels comfortable enough, try to ask questions leading to the child disclosing abuse such as “can you tell me more about the game you are playing right now?”. Don’t judge and just ask open ended questions. If the child discloses abuse, tell him or her that you need to tell some other people so they can help. Make sure the child is safe. Give a call to CPS or law enforcement depending on the cases. Sometimes a call to the police might be justified for example if the child disclosed that the boyfriend of the mother abuses him or her and that the mother is about to pick him or her up.