A public education campaign has been announced by Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey, Sheriff Jim McDonnell and the Inter-Agency Council on Child Abuse and Neglect, in order to highlight Child Abuse Prevention Month in April. DA Lacey announced, “in a place as expansive as Los Angeles County, it is most critical that we unite to prevent child abuse. The well-being of children in our communities depend on each of us and, if ever we believe a child is at risk of physical, sexual, and emotional abuse or neglect, it is our responsibility to alert authorities.”
The “No Hitters,” campaign kicks off on the heels of professional baseball’s Opening Day and is an opportunity to inform the public through weekly social media posts about the various aspects of child abuse. It also places emphasis on how to report the maltreatment of a minor. It culminates at the end of the month with a psa featuring DA Lacey and Sheriff McDonell to be shown at Dodger Stadium on April 23 for Child Abuse Awareness Night.
Sheriff McDonnell stated, “Every day in Los Angeles County, many children are victims of abuse. “Identifying and protecting these children will have a tremendous impact on many young lives. The Sheriff’s Department’s Special Victims Bureau collaborates with every agency entrusted with the protection of children. This team approach is key to starting the healing process for our young victims.”
In collaboration with ICAN, the Board of Supervisors will declare April 2018 as Child Abuse Prevention Month in LA County at its weekly meeting. ICAN Executive Director Deanne Tilton announced, “It is our belief that by informing and involving the community, we can better assure the safety and well-being for the children and families of Los Angeles County.”
Under California law, child abuse involves the maltreatment, injury or exploitation of a person under 18 years old, either physically, sexually, emotionally or through neglect, and according to ICAN’s most recent State of Child Abuse report, 1,785 Los Angeles County child abuse reports were submitted to the Department of Justice in 2016.