Child abuse: A higher risk during the coronavirus pandemic

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COLORADO SPRINGS — Child Abuse Prevention month takes on a deeper meaning this year, as the coronavirus pandemic keeps families at home.

“Any family is at risk because we all tend to be more stressed when there’s something we can’t control. And this is certainly an example of a situation we cannot control. And when we feel it’s out of our control, we give up some of those normal factors that keep us calm and able to react well,” said Margaret Sabin, president of Children’s Hospital Colorado, Colorado Springs. 

A survey from the Colorado Department of Public Health And Environment shows of more than 44,000 Coloradans surveyed, 70-percent have chosen to or have been asked to work from home.

50-percent of those surveyd reported feelings of stress or anxiety. 

“It could be the family having a job loss or their children, their grown children having a job loss. It might be that they know that they’re going to have to be caretakers for their grandkids because their own kids need to catch up after we get through this crisis. All of that, including food and security, mounting bills,” Sabin said. 

According to Childrens Hospital Colorado, Colorado Springs, those numbers mean access to resources is more important ever. 

“A big reason for reaching out is that we don’t have our normal mechanisms in place for identifying children under stress or children who might be victims of abuse,” Sabin said. 

It’s why they’re partnering with Safe Kids Colorado Springs and the Colorado Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline: Co-4-Kids. 

Now, they’re hoping everyone in community will post about the resources they have available to help families and kids cope with stress by using the hashtag: #greatchildhoods. 

“Watching out for each other, inquiring as to how we’re dont, looking for the opportunity call a neighbor and do a socially distance walk. Get out into the sun, look for opportunities to say how are you doing, how are your children doing?” Sabin said. 

Click here the children’s hospital’s list of resources they’re offering families on their website.

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