Child maltreatment includes harm to a child in the form of physical, sexual, or emotional abuse or neglect by a parent, caregiver, or authorized custodian such as a coach, teacher, or clergyperson. Child maltreatment has a negative effect on health. Abused children often suffer physical injuries. In addition, maltreatment causes stress that can disrupt early brain development, which may continue to have an impact into adulthood (CDC Fact Sheet on Child Maltreatment). Across the U.S., 1,640 children died in 2012 from abuse and neglect and 686,000 children were found by child protective services to be victims of maltreatment.agencies for possible abuse and neglect (Prevent Child Abuse NC).
In North Carolina in 2013-2014, 128,005 children were referred to local Department of Social Services agencies for possible abuse and neglect (Prevent Child Abuse NC). In 2012, the most recent year for which data are available, 28 NC children died as a result of neglect or abuse by a parent or caregiver.
Prevent Child Abuse America