31 May 2012

Recognizing True Nature of Child Sexual Abuse

Child safety laws” are being passed all over the country, restricting sex offenders from accessing public parks, beaches and even libraries. But those laws are too little, too late, for the one in four girls who experience child sexual abuse. By focusing on a criminal justice response for the offender, communities miss an opportunity to prevent future abuse.

An estimated 10 percent of child sexual abuse is reported to authorities. The other 90 percent of offenders continue to live among us, obscured by the fact that they are our uncles, family friends and basketball coaches. The real danger to children is not the unknown sex offender – who may not even be dangerous, depending on the nature of his crime – but the abusers that we trust and love without suspicion. What’s more effective than banning strangers from the park is creating a Family Safety Plan for loved ones in your home. Make a commitment to protect your children – and your community’s children – through pro-active solutions.

Photo: Elizabeth Rappaport


  1. This is a very informative post. You might be interested in some of the related interviews on www.extraordinarywomentv.com

  2. Another problem with "child safety zones" and the like is that they also harm children whose loved ones are sex offenders. Most sex offenders haven't victimized children and the re-offense rates are extremely low - yet after they've served their time, they and their families continue to suffer. It's sad that politicians know this type of legislation doesn't work, yet continue to pass it, and tell the public it's helping children. It's not - not in any way, shape or form.

    1. You raise a comparably small point in the scope of a hugh problem. I can't see this well-intended, and often effective, type of legislation as "sad". There are certainly enough sexual offenders who have abused kids and self-report that they are less tempted to reoffend if they are not around children at play. Until there is a cure or solution for pedophilia, I'm glad to err on the side of making ALL sex offenders follow restrictions selected for them by the courts.
      Julie Golden, Vagilantes