Fact Sheet: Child Maltreatment

Child MaltreatmentMain Types of Child Maltreatment:
  • Physical abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Psychological abuse (emotional abuse, verbal abuse, mental injury)
  • Neglect
  • Children exposed to partner violence*
    * Some experts do not classify this under the realm of child maltreatment

The Problem:

  • In 2002, there were approximately 906,000 victims of child maltreatment nationwide1:
    • 61% suffered neglect
    • 19% suffered physical abuse
    • 10% suffered sexual abuse
    • 5% suffered psychological or emotional abuse
    • An estimated 1,500 children confirmed to have died from maltreatment
  • Children under the age of four are most likely to be victims of child maltreatment, and are at greatest risk of severe injury or death1,2. Children 4 and under comprised 76.1% of all fatalities for in 2002 3
  • Girls are slightly more likely to be victims than boys3
  • More than 80% of perpetrators were parents3
  • 43.6 % of reports of alleged child abuse or neglect were made by friends, neighbors and relatives. Over half were made by professionals: 3
    • 16.1 % were made my educators
    • 15.7% were made by law enforcement
    • 12.6% made by social services personnel
    • Remaining reports were made by medical personnel, mental health personnel, child daycare providers, and foster care providers.
  • Florida was among 3 other states and the District of Columbia with the highest child maltreatment rates in the U.S. in 20022
  • Child maltreatment can have long-lasting consequences on a child’s health, brain development, cognition, and behavioral, psychological, social and emotional development2
  • Societal costs of maltreatment are just beginning to be studied, and direct and indirect costs are estimated to range from $67 to 94 billion each year.2


  1. National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (2005). Child Maltreatment: Fact Sheet. Retrieved April 19, 2005.
  2. TEAM Florida Partnership Interprogram Task Force (2005). Florida’s Plan for Prevention of Child Abuse, Neglect, and Abandonment: 2005-2009.
  3. Department of Health and Human Services (2002). Child Maltreatment Report. 13th annual publication of data collected from the National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System.