This New Dawn

Laurel Hall Author and Poet      Child neglect, the most widespread form of child abuse in the United States, includes any neglectful action that prevents a child from living a happy and healthy life.   The majority of cases deal with physical neglect where the child is not given the basic requirements of life such as food, clothing, shelter and/or lack of supervision.  He may suffer from serious illnesses or physical harm such as cuts, bruises, or other injuries and may just fail to flourish in his environment.

     Another form of neglect is Educational Neglect.  When a parent fails to enroll a child who is of appropriate age in school or provide him with home schooling, this prevents him from acquiring basic life skills.  This form of neglect can present a serious danger to the child’s emotional well-being, physical health or normal psychological growth and development, especially if the child has special needs.

     Emotional and Psychological Neglect includes continued or fatal spousal abuse in the child’s presence; permitting a child to use drugs or alcohol; declining psychological care to a child; withholding affection, or constantly belittling the child. 

    The last form is Medical Neglect, the failure of the parent to provide proper health care for a child, placing him in danger of being disabled, disfigured or dying.   This includes refusing medical care for emergency situations or acute illness, or for chronic disease or disability.  Medical neglect can result in poor general health and compounded health problems.

What can you do?      If you suspect an instance of child neglect, you must report the individual to the local child protective services agency in your county or state.

For more information on child neglect visit  American Humane Association:


Caring for victims,

Laurel Hall