What to Do When You See Abuse in Public | Child Abuse Prevention Month

April 26, 2011

Programs and Services

What To Do If You See Child Abuse in a Public Place – From Missouri KidsFirst

Start a conversation with the adult to direct attention away from the child.
For Example:
★ She seems to be trying your patience.
★ My child sometimes gets upset like that, too.
★ Children can really wear you out sometimes. Is there anything I can do to help?

Divert the child’s attention (if misbehaving) by talking to the child.
★ I like your t-shirt. Did you get that on vacation?

Look for an opportunity to praise the parent or child.
For Example:
★ He has the most beautiful eyes.
★ That’s a very pretty shirt on your little girl Where did you get it?

If the child is in danger, offer assistance.

For Example:
★ If the child is left unattended in a grocery cart, stand near the child until the parent returns
★ If the child is in immediate danger, call the police!

Avoid negative remarks or looks.
★ Negative reactions are likely to increase the parent’s stress or anger, and could make
matters worse for the child.