The number of Indiana children who died from abuse or neglect has increased.
The latest report from the Department of Child Services lists 40 deaths in 2011, up from 25 the previous year. The report also indicates nearly half of the deaths were children under a year of age.
Prevent Child Abuse Indiana Director of Programs Sandy Runkle says there are many factors that lead to abuse and neglect deaths.
“Domestic violence, unfortunately, can be a contributing factor, substance can be a contributing factor,” she says. “Insufficient income can be a contributing factor. But we want to be very clear when we say this. Just because someone doesn’t make a lot of money doesn’t mean they can’t parent.
Runkle says parents need better education on how to deal with stress factors and where to turn for help.