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Child Abuse and Child Sexual Abuse

What is child abuse?

Child abuse is when a parent or caregiver, causes injury, death, emotional harm or risk of serious harm to a child. There are many forms of child abuse:

Child physical abuse - physical abuse occurs when a parent or caregiver commits an act that results in physical injury to a child (red marks, cuts, welts, bruises, muscle sprains, or broken bones)
  • Slapping
  • Pulling hair
  • Kicking
  • Punching
Emotional child abuse - pattern of behavior that impairs a child’s emotional development or sense of self-worth
  • Humiliation
  • Ridicules your belief/religion/race/heritage
  • Manipulations
  • Intimidation

Child sexual abuse - It's sexual activity with a child

  • Forces you to take off clothes
  • Touches child that makes you feel uncomfortable
  • Insist child dress in provocative clothing
  • Forces child to perform sexual acts or have sex against their will

Know the signs of child abuse - A child who is a victim of abuse may

  • Shows sudden changes in behavior-school performance decreased or developed disruptive behaviors in school
  • Bruises, marks on skin
  • Difficulty concentrating that cannot be attributed to specific physical or psychological causes
  • Signs of Regression - potty trained child regressed to wetting the bed

What is child sexual abuse?

It's sexual activity with a child. Sexual abuse can be physical or nonphysical

Example of physical:

  • Fondling or any kind of inappropriate touching
  • Rape or attempted rape
  • Using a child to create pornography

Example of Nonphysical:

  • Indecent exposure
  • Talking about sex to shock a child or spark his or her curiosity
  • Allowing a child to watch or hear sexual acts or materials
Signs of sexual abuse:
  • Injury to the genital area
  • Painful urination or stomach-aches
  • Sexually transmitted disease

How to prevent child abuse?

  • Know the signs of child abuse and child sexual abuse
  • Report any suspected abuse to the abuse hotline 1-800-96-ABUSE (1-800-962-2873)
  • Contact your local police department
  • Talk to your kids about good and bad touching
  • Communication with your children

Community Resources for victims of child abuse/child sexual abuse:

Kristi House for counseling, RTC-relocation services, Miami Dade Police Department

Roxy Bolton Rape Treatment Center (Main Office) Jackson Memorial Hospital
1611 NW 12 Avenue, Miami, FL 33136
Main office 305-585-5185
24 hour hotline 305-585-RAPE (7273)

Kristi House
1265 NW 12 Avenue, Miami, FL 33136

Child Protection Team
1150 NW 14 Street, Suite #212, Miami, FL 33136

Miami Dade Police Department-Special Victims Bureau
Victim Advocate Assistance