Child Maltreatment Statistics

20Research on child abuse public awareness shows communities feel less empowered to prevent abuse when events and news stories focus on terrible tragedies and fatalities. If you are planning an awareness event or writing an article, we encourage you to focus on your community’s ability to raise safe, happy, healthy children and on programs and services that are in place to ensure children are in nurturing environments at home, in school, and in the community.

North Carolina law requires that any adult who suspects that abuse is occurring must make a report. Click here for information on how to make a referral in the state of North Carolina.

Child Abuse and Neglect in North Carolina – (SFY) 2019 – 2020

117,268 children with investigated reports of possible abuse and neglect in North Carolina from July 2019 to June 2020.

North Carolina uses the Multiple Response System (MRS) to respond to suspected child abuse and neglect. Every referral is investigated through a strengths-based, family-centered assessment conducted by either local law enforcement or the local DSS. These professionals recognize that parents want what is best for their children, and that many families face issues that make parenting more challenging. When you refer a family to DSS, you are actually referring them for services that will strengthen the family as a whole.

Child Fatalities in North Carolina

28 children died at the hand of a parent or caregiver in North Carolina in 2020 (the latest data available). The number of fatalities varies from year to year and deaths result from a range of situations.

For more information: NC Office of the Chief Medical Examiner

Join the Prevention Action Network

Join an affiliation of agencies and individuals who are invested in developing safe, stable, nurturing relationships for all NC children.

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