With schools shuttered and mandated reporters like teachers, day care workers, coaches, and Scout leaders no longer able to monitor children’s well-being, it’s anyone’s guess how children are faring. But if history is any indication, child welfare workers say that any drop in referrals is a good indicator of what’s to come.
Erica Fener Sitkoff, executive director of Voices for Georgia’s Children, said young children who are not yet verbal, and children with disabilities, tend to be at greater risk [of child abuse and neglect].
“Substance abuse is one of the top three reasons a child is removed from their home,” said Sitkoff. “Because parents may turn to drugs or alcohol to relieve some of the stress and anxiety they are feeling, it is important that neighbors and family members provide a safety net for all children right now by virtually checking in with families.”