How Common Are Child Abuse Crimes from Babysitters?
By: Valerie Goodwin
August 9, 2021
All parents want some alone time eventually. Whether that is to run some errands, take a nap, or go out with friends or family. What do you do with the kids though? A common option is to leave them with a babysitter. But who can you trust?
Domestic abuse crimes involving children are more common than one might think. Keep reading to learn more about the statistics of crimes against children and how to make sure you have some peace of mind about who you are letting stay with your children.
The Ugly Statistics
An article published by the Children’s Bureau in April of 2021 takes a look at child maltreatment statistics from 2019. According to the article, an estimated 1,840 children died in 2019 from child neglect and abuse alone. Children in the age group of newborn to 1 years old had the highest rate of victimization when it came to child abuse crimes. The most common type of child maltreatment is neglect, followed by physical abuse.
The majority of these child abuse crimes were committed by parents of the children. The next most common abuser was relatives or close family friends of the parents that the children were around often. About 83% of these abusers were between the ages of 18 and 44.
Is There Any Good News?
Well, sort of. Babysitters and child care workers only accounted for about 3.8% of abusers according to the Children’s Bureau article. They are the least likely to abuse the children they are watching. These statistics are also backed up by a study that the U.S. Department of Justice released in 2001 looking at crimes against children. Their research also found that babysitters and childcare workers are not the main concern when talking about child abuse statistics.
Why Are Crimes Against Children Rates So Low Among Child Care Workers?
The answer is simple: background checks. Most daycares or babysitting companies require their employees to have a thorough background check done before they are hired. According to ChildCare.gov, these background checks include an FBI fingerprint check, a search on the National Crime Information Center’s National Sex Offender Registry, and state criminal registry and sex offender searches. These background checks then must be reconducted every 5 years after being hired.
What Can I Do As A Parent To Protect My Child?
First off, if you are aware of a child that is being abused or neglected call your state’s CPS services. To find their number just Google search “CPS Hotline” followed by your state’s name.
If you are a parent, you might be wanting your own peace of mind before having someone else take care of your children. While many daycare and babysitting organizations run background checks, the local neighborhood teen or college kid that is offering to babysit probably doesn’t have one to offer. Now, you can easily ask for a simple background check from your future babysitter using the YourCheck app. Just ask them to send their background check to you through the app and you can review it yourself. There is no shame in wanting to make your own judgment call, especially when it comes to the safety of your children.
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