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National Clearinghouse on Homeless Youth and Families

Child Physical Abuse Did Not Increase During the Pandemic.

Authors
Sege, R., & Stephens, A.
Type new
Research Brief
Year published new
2021
Journal Name

JAMA Pediatrics

Volume new
176
Issue
4
Abstract

Rates of child abuse appear to have fallen in 2020. Nevertheless, some experts, including physicians, have offered their opinions that child abuse must be on the rise because of the COVID-19 pandemic, even explicitly waving away evidence to the contrary. Recognizing the paradox of declining rates amid increased risks points to important lessons for prevention: perhaps a combination of family strengths, community resources, and government assistance has prevented many cases of child maltreatment. A review of available data suggests that there was not a significant rise in child abuse related to COVID-19. Child welfare re