One in Eight US Kids Abused or Neglected

A new study suggests that child maltreatment is more common than currently estimated. Published in JAMA Pediatrics on Monday, the new investigation predicts 12 percent of all American children will experience abuse or serious neglect by the time they reach age 18. Different minority groups had higher rates: 21 percent among blacks, 14.5 percent for Native Americans, and 13 percent for Hispanic children. The study pegs the rate of child maltreatment much higher than the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which says it is about 1 percent for confirmed cases. Lead researcher Christopher Wilderman of Yale University said, “When it’s 12.5 percent of parents, this isn’t psychopaths, this isn’t drug addicts. A lot of these folks are in dire straits financially and certainly have their ups and downs, like we all do.”