Child abuse reported as high in Adams County - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Child abuse reported as high in Adams County

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QUINCY, Ill. (WGEM) -

April is Child Abuse Prevention Month in Illinois and local police say it's not only a problem statewide in Illinois, but also a problem that hits too close to home.

(Click here for the latest DCFS statewide child abuse statistics report)

At Chaddock in Quincy, caregivers help children, ages 8 to 16, who have experienced severe abuse, neglect, or other trauma.

"They've experienced these adults maybe, who've really treated them in a way that the adult is not supposed to treat them. The adult is supposed to be the protector and the safe place," said Clinical Supervisor Mark Vander Ley.

Last year there were 300 cases of child abuse or neglect, just in Adams County alone.

(Click here to read "Child abuse and neglect on the rise in Adams County")

"The younger children, probably are going to be impacted more severely by child abuse, just because they're so young and have fewer resources," explained Vander Ley.

Sgt. Jeff Grott with the Quincy Police Department says the majority of the cases he sees deal with sexual abuse.

"Typically the abuse we see is family related, but not always, it could be neighbors," said Grott. "We don't see much of the stranger type of abuse in Quincy."

With the number of sexual abuse cases in the area, Vander Ley says there are some tell-tale signs you can look for in a child that may be a victim of abuse.

"If you're a teacher or if you're someone in the neighborhood and you're noticing significant changes in a child's behavior that would be something to sort of hold on in your mind," said Vander Ley.

Grott says that unfortunately the children usually never come forward. Instead, it's a teacher or counselor that may notice bruises on the child, or overhear a conversation the child may be having with a peer.

If you suspect child abuse or neglect, you're encouraged to call 1-800-25-ABUSE.

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