Custody Preparation for Moms

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Custody Preparation for Moms Fact Sheet

Child Sexual Abuse

 

  • 1 in 4 girls and at least 1 in 10 boys is sexually abused in some way by the age of 18 (Finkelhor 1979)
  • 10% of those children are preschoolers (Children's Hospital, D.C.)
  • 85-90% involve perpetrator known to the child (Groth, 1982; DeFrancis, 1969; Russell, 1983)
  • 35% involve a family member (King County Rape Relief, Washington)
  • Only 10% of the offenses involve physical violence (Jaffee, 1975)
  • 50% of all assaults take place in the home of the child or the offender (Sanford, 1980)
  • For all types of maltreatment, more than half of the children who were victims were maltreated by one or both of their parents. The most striking difference, however, is that children who were victims of physical and sexual abuse, compared to children who were victims of neglect and medical neglect, were more likely to be maltreated by a male parent acting alone. In cases of sexual abuse, more than half (55.9%) of the victims were abused by male parents, male relatives, or other males. (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Administration on Children, Youth and Families, Children's Bureau, Child Maltreatment 1998, Reports From the States to the National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System)
  • Sexual abuse is perpetrated primarily by men. 95% of the perpetrators of girls are men, and 80% of the perpetrators of boys are men. (Bass & Davis 1998)
  • In 1995, local child protective service agencies identified 126,000 children who were victims of either substantiated or indicated sexual abuse; of these,75% were girls. Nearly 30% of child victims were between the ages of 4 and 7. (Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Child Maltreatment, 1995)
  • Approximately one-third of all juvenile victims of sexual abuse cases are children younger than 6 years of age. (Violence and the Family. Report of the American Psychological Association Presidential Task Force on Violence and the Family, 1996)
  • Sixty-seven percent of all victims of sexual assault reported to law enforcement agencies were juveniles (under the age of 18); 34% of all victims were under age 12. (U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, Sexual Assault of Young Children as Reported to Law Enforcement: Victim, Incident, and Offender Characteristics, 1991-1996, 7/00 report. Presents findings from the National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS) regarding sexual assault, especially of young children. NCJ 182990)
  • One of every seven victims of sexual assault reported to law enforcement agencies were under age 6. (Same cite as above)
  • Child sexual abuse victims account for more than half of all individuals in the United States receiving mental health counseling or therapy, at an estimated cost between $8.3 billion and $9.7 billion in 1991 (Cohen 1998, p. 106)
  • Child sexual abuse allegations are made in only 2 to 3% of divorce cases and less than 10% of contested custody cases. (Zorza 2001, Thoennes 1990)
  • The Massachusetts General Hospital Study found that 60% of children sexually abused were forced to visit their alleged abuser, often overnight, with no or almost no supervision after the allegation (Zorza 2001, Armstrong 1994)

 

 

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  1. Bass, Ellen & Laura Davis, The Courage to Heal: A Guide for women Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse, Harper & Row, 1988, p. 96 in Russell, Diane, The Secret Trauma
  2. Zorza, Joan J.D., Why Courts Are Reluctant to Believe and Respond to Allegations of Incest, 2001, p. 3 & 5; Armstrong 1994; Thoennes 1990
  3. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Administration on Children, Youth and Families, Children's Bureau, Child Maltreatment 1998, Reports From the States to the National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System
  4. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Child Maltreatment, 1995.  
  5. Violence and the Family.  Report of the American Psychological Association Presidential Task Force on Violence and the Family, 1996.
  6. U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, Sexual Assault of Young Children as Reported to Law Enforcement:    Victim, Incident, and Offender Characteristics, 1991-1996, 7/00.  Presents findings from the National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS) regarding sexual assault, especially of young children.  NCJ 182990

 


 

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