Preventing Abuse and Neglect - The Essentials

Whether or not you've experienced domestic or child abuse personally, you probably know that it can have devastating consequences. Victims carry the emotional scars of abuse long after they're out of harm's way. Everyone loses in abusive and neglectful households. To be a true guardian of your family, it’s important to know the signs of abuse, steps that can be taken to prevent or stop it, along with the resources available to help you or someone you know in need.

Identify and report child abuse.

Everyone has a role to play when it comes to the health and safety of children. The Department of Defense defines child abuse as injury to, maltreatment of, or neglect of a child by a parent, guardian or caregiver so that the child's welfare is harmed or threatened. Learn how to recognize the signs of child abuse and how to report suspected abuse. You could ultimately save a child’s life.

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Understand domestic abuse.

Domestic abuse usually involves a pattern of violence and emotional and verbal abuse. Sometimes it can be less obvious than other times, which is why it is important to understand the different signs. Except in select circumstances, victims have the option of making either a restricted or an unrestricted report of domestic abuse. Both options allow access to personal help and support, also known as victim advocacy services.

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