Waiving signs and banners that proclaimed messages such as “No Excuse for Child Abuse,” a stream of Southeast Texans clad in blue shirts took to the streets surrounding the Jefferson County Courthouse to make a statement that could be not only be heard, but seen by every motorist, employee and guest of Beaumont’s central downtown area.
Local Child Protective Services spokeswoman Shari Pulliam readied for the event, stating that demonstrations such as the one in Beaumont on Friday, April 1, will be sprouting up all over the Lone Star State as the next 30 days herald in April as Child Abuse Awareness Month. According to her, child abuse “tears at the very fabric of our society but every community and every individual can play an important role in preventing child abuse.”
That’s why, she said, the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) is teaming with local governments and community groups during April in a call to action to fight child abuse. A schedule of local events is available now at www.ItsUpToYou.org . CPS representatives, along with other community leaders, held a press conference preceding the April 1 walk kicking off the event and assured the community of their commitment to helping children harmed at the hand of those entrusted to protect them.
QUICK FACTS FROM CPS:
227 Texas children died because of abuse or neglect at the hands of their parents or guardians (53 less than the previous year).
66,897 children were confirmed victims of abuse or neglect.
16,347 children were removed from their homes because of abuse or neglect.
Recognize the signs of child abuse, and never assume someone else will do something about it. Report suspected abuse or neglect to the Abuse and Neglect Hotline at (800) 252-5400 or online at www.txabusehotline.org .