Child Maltreatment 2010

December 15, 2011

Website Link

Highlights from Child Maltreatment 2010:

  • An estimated 3.3 million reports were made to state child protective services (CPS) agencies (same as 2009)
  • Less than two-thirds (60.7%) of those were accepted by CPS for an investigation or assessment (same as 2009)
  • The number of nationally estimated unique victims is 695,000, down from an estimated 702,000 in 2009 and 772,000 in 2008
  • 9.7% of referrals made to CPS for an assessment were referred to an alternative response for services rather than a formal investigation and finding of maltreatment, a total of 331,204 children
  • The overall rate of victimization is inversely related to a child's age, with the youngest children suffering the highest rates
  • Among victims referred to CPS agencies in 2010:
    • 44.8% of all victims were white
    • 21.9% were African-American
    • 21.4% were Hispanic
    • However, victims of African-American, American Indian or Alaska Native, and multiple racial descent had the highest rates of victimization at 14.6, 11.0, and 12.7, respectively, per 1,000 children in the population of the same race or ethnicity.
  • 78.4% of unique victims were neglected, 17.6% were physically abused, 9.2% were sexually abused, 8.1% were psychologically maltreated, and 2.4% were medically neglected.  10.3% of victims experienced such "other" types of maltreatment as abandonment, threats of harm to the child or congenital drug addiction.
  • Children reported in 2010 as having a disability as a risk factor accounted for 16 percent of victims. However, children with such a risk factor in general are undercounted, as not every child receives a clinical diagnostic assessment from CPS agency staff.
  • Almost half (47.7%) of all fatalities were children younger than 1 year old, and more than three-quarters were younger than 4.
  • Almost two-fifths of child victims (38.8%) received no services from the CPS agency following a substantiated report of maltreatment. Thus, states continue to be hard-pressed to treat children or protect them from further harm.