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Child Abuse Identification and Reporting

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Key Message

The Department of Defense has a statutory obligation to address child abuse and neglect within the military. States can assist the department by requiring local jurisdictions to identify military families and develop reporting and information-sharing procedures between civilian child protective services and military child advocacy.

Analysis

The DOD relies on working in collaboration with state and local governments to fulfill its statutory obligation to address child abuse and neglect. States are encouraged to require child protective services to identify military families and report cases of abuse and neglect to military officials early in the process, enhancing the ability of military family assistance programs to protect military children and support their families.

Statistic

DOD is required to address child abuse in military families, but with 70% of active-duty families living in civilian communities, service officials are sometimes unaware of problems.