ProtectikindsKENTUCKY (7/12/13) – The state of Kentucky has seen many cases that have erupted regarding sexual abuse of children over the last year.

Statistics put forth by David Finkelhor, Director of the Crimes Against Children Research Center, state the following statistics on sexual abuse involving minors.

•    1 in 5 girls and 1 in 20 boys is a victim of child sexual abuse;
•    Self-report studies show that 20% of adult females and 5-10% of adult males recall a childhood sexual assault or sexual abuse incident;
•    During a one-year period in the U.S., 16% of youth ages 14 to 17 had been sexually victimized;
•    Over the course of their lifetime, 28% of U.S. youth ages 14 to 17 had been sexually victimized;
•    Children are most vulnerable to child sexual abuse between the ages of 7 and 13.

Armed with this knowledge, one must take proper precautions to keep the children safe.

Initially, keep in mind that a very large majority of sexual crimes can originate from communications on the internet. With this in mind, children should be closely monitored if allowed access to the internet. Parents should constantly watch what websites their children are on and make certain that they are family friendly. Quite often sexual criminals will start out finding their prey on social networking sites. It is a good idea to not allow children to have access to social networking, or any site that allows contact with other individuals.

Many cases of child sexual abuse are related to non-family/friends, such as child care. If you are going to hire a babysitter, it is best to hire someone that you already know, such as a family member. If you don’t have anyone you are familiar with to take on this responsibility, do some research. When hiring a babysitter, always do a background check. Get references, preferably with a mutual contact that you already know. Some parents will, wisely, go so far as to put cameras in their home to monitor the entire household while they are away and the child is with a babysitter. This may seem a bit paranoid, but a child’s safety comes first to a responsible parent/guardian.

Next up, be watchful. You may think you know your neighbors and/or local citizens well. Nevertheless, it is not wise to let a minor walk around a neighborhood, city park, or even sidewalks by themselves. It is not unheard of for a child to be abducted or sexually abused while a parent is inside cleaning house, or just not actively monitoring their child.

Inform your child of the necessity to avoid strangers, and to be defensive when approached by a stranger. Any stranger should realize that you do not approach a child without approaching a parent or guardian first.

Don’t automatically expect that your child will tell you if he/she has been sexually abused. Statistics show that many children will not admit that they were sexually abused until they are grown, and some will not ever admit it.

Lastly, use instincts. If you have a bad feeling about something or someone, avoid it.

Local law enforcement goes the distance to protect our children, but we, as parents/guardians, must realize that we are the first line of defense for our children. It is not necessary to be paranoid constantly, suspecting everyone as a child abuser, but it is necessary to be vigilant and to know that you are your children’s initial safety factor.

J.L. Graham
SurfKY News

LIKE SurfKY on Facebook - Click here to LIKE us now.

© Copyright 2015 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story on social media.

Most Read This Week

April 23, 2015 7679

Man Charged with Sodomy, Incest/Victim under 12

by SurfKY News
April 20, 2015 4966

Nortonville Woman Charged with Meth Possession at…

by Madisonville Police Department
April 24, 2015 4277

UPDATE: Police Can't Substantiate Injured Man…

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
April 22, 2015 4026

Crime Stoppers Fugitive of the Week – April 22,…

by Hopkinsville – Christian County Crime Stoppers
April 22, 2015 3945

Madisonville Man Accused of Domestic Violence/Rape

by SurfKY News

Most Read This Month

April 17, 2015 12534

An Open Letter from an Addict

by Olivia Kirks
April 02, 2015 8866

UPDATE: Madisonville Man Injured in Head-on…

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News

Stories Trending Now

April 26, 2015 875

New Drug Helps Farmer with Parkinson's Return to…

by Laura Dawahare
April 26, 2015 455

White Plains Civil War Festival Provides Learning…

by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
April 26, 2015 454

College of Education Alum's Studies, Experience…

by Amanda Nelson
April 26, 2015 419

Legislator's Log - Week of April 26, 2015

by Brent Yonts
April 26, 2015 405

Dave Says - April 26, 2015

by Dave Ramsey
April 26, 2015 385

Mother's Day Buffet Planned at State Parks May 10

by Gil Lawson
April 26, 2015 384

Outdoor Truths - April 26, 2015

by Gary Miller
April 26, 2015 343

Spring Lawn, Garden Fair Participants Learn from…

by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News
April 26, 2015 283

Mustangs lose to Ohio County via shutout

by Steve LeMaster
April 26, 2015 262

Dawson Springs Mule, Draft Horse Days Come to a…

by Amber Averitt, SurfKY News