MAINLINE NEWS MINUTE FOR THE WEEK OF JAN 29
Written by Gabriella Raful on January 30, 2024
By: Gabriella Raful
The 14th annual “State of Child Welfare in Pennsylvania” report is out. It shows some progress, but also highlights ongoing areas of concern. Reports of child abuse and neglect allegations have risen in the last two years, coming close to pre-pandemic levels. And 2022 saw one-thousand more child abuse or Child Protective Services reports compared to 2021. Rachael Miller with Pennsylvania Partnerships for Children says the rise indicates families are struggling with basic needs, from mental-health support to housing instability.
“Allegations that are substantiated were at 12% for abuse, and a quarter of neglect reports were found to be substantiated. (:09) It’s important to note that child welfare agencies continue to provide a significant amount of services to families. Over 211,000 children and families were provided with county-funded services to meet their needs.”
General Protective Service reports also increased in 2022, topping 165-thousand. Miller says social safety nets could address these problems rather than child welfare interventions – services like child care, home-visiting programs to at-risk families, housing services, mental health and substance-use treatment.