Quantcast

Changing family dynamics may contribute to child abuse, neglect - KTBS.com - Shreveport, LA News, Weather and Sports

Changing family dynamics may contribute to child abuse, neglect

Posted: Updated:
SHREVEPORT, La. -

While many were enjoying fireworks, the 4th of July holiday was a nightmare for others, with one child left dead, and another left alone for hours.

And those are just in Shreveport in less than a week.

Other recent, disturbing cases including the arrest of a Baton Rouge couple accused of leaving seven children unattended while they went shopping on the 4th.

And in North Little Rock, two people were charged with endangering the welfare of a minor for leaving an infant alone in a hot car over the weekend.

Cases like these prompted KTBS 3 News to ask the question -- how did we get to this point?

According to the Child Welfare League of America, there were 8,848 reported cases of child abuse or neglect in Louisiana in 2010.

"The [young parents] are trying to survive. They're trying to take care, but do they really know what to do?"

Nearly 82% of the children in those cases were victims of neglect, something that experts say can lead to devastating abandonment issues, but that's just for those who make it out alive.

"Those kids who really, really cling, they think mom isn't coming back," says Shreveport Addiction Specialist and Counselor Norma Whitaker.

Whitaker says young parents are often raising children alone, without ever having been taught how to be a responsible adult.

"We don't have that extended family where grandma is there telling you, 'you need to do this. You need to do that.'"

With the state's poverty rate for children under five sitting at 33%, Whitaker says everyday stresses can drive a parent without a support system to make decisions that aren't always in a child's best interest.

"If I know my child goes to sleep at 7 p.m., and usually sleeps all night long, in my mind, wait, I can go out for an hour or two, and destress myself and come back, and no one will ever know."

She says another break-down in many communities is that residents are no longer getting to know their neighbors.

She says being able to trust a neighbor with child care responsibilties lessens the burden on parents.

The LA Department of Children and Family Services offers a toll-free, 24-hour number to report child abuse or neglect.

That number is 1-855-4LA-KIDS, or 1-855-452-5437.

  • ArkLaTex SlideshowsMore>>

  • ArkLaTex Adoptable Pets

    ArkLaTex Adoptable Pets

    Friday, August 29 2014 6:12 PM EDT2014-08-29 22:12:16 GMT
    There are lots of animals in the Ark-La-Tex who are looking for that perfect home.
    There are lots of animals in the Ark-La-Tex who are looking for that perfect home.
  • KTBS 3 Viewer's Pets

    KTBS 3 Viewer's Pets

    Thursday, August 28 2014 7:00 PM EDT2014-08-28 23:00:16 GMT
    Viewer's petsViewer's pets
    Viewer's pets
    Viewer's pets
  • Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services Adoptable Children

    Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services Adoptable Children

    Thursday, August 28 2014 6:44 PM EDT2014-08-28 22:44:11 GMT
    DJanaeDJanae
    Foster/Adoption Parenting Minimum Qualifications and Steps to Certification Minimum Qualifications for Certification.
    Foster/Adoption Parenting Minimum Qualifications and Steps to Certification Minimum Qualifications for Certification.
  • Assignment EducationMore>>

  • Pilot program through Volunteers of America works to prevent drop-outs in local schools

    Pilot program through Volunteers of America works to prevent drop-outs in local schools

    Sunday, August 31 2014 7:48 AM EDT2014-08-31 11:48:45 GMT
    (Photo source: Volunteers of America)(Photo source: Volunteers of America)
    Education and skills training beyond high school isn't even a consideration for a startling number of students.
    Education and skills training beyond high school isn't even a consideration for a startling number of students.
  • Anna P. Tooke Memorial Library taking shape in South Bossier Parish

    Anna P. Tooke Memorial Library taking shape in South Bossier Parish

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 10:27 PM EDT2014-08-28 02:27:55 GMT
    Anna P. Tooke Memorial Library (Photo source: Prevot Design Services)Anna P. Tooke Memorial Library (Photo source: Prevot Design Services)
    It's Bossier Parish's smallest library branch. Originally just a bookmobile, this 12 x 30 foot temporary metal building has been the Koran community's only branch since 1977.
    It's Bossier Parish's smallest library branch. Originally just a bookmobile, this 12 x 30 foot temporary metal building has been the Koran community's only branch since 1977.
  • Family mourns loss of Natchitoches teen

    Family mourns loss of Natchitoches teen

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 7:53 PM EDT2014-08-27 23:53:10 GMT
    18-year-old Johnquaries Smith was a high school senior at Natchitoches Central High school.He died Tuesday after he was punched by another student on campus.
    18-year-old Johnquaries Smith was a high school senior at Natchitoches Central High school.He died Tuesday after he was punched by another student on campus.
  • KTBS 3 News Tips

    Send your news tip or story idea to the KTBS 3 Newsroom.  Enter your email address below to get started.

    * denotes required fields
    We're sorry, but only one entry is allowed per person.
    Thank you for your continued interest.

    Thank you for your submission to KTBS 3 News.  A member of our staff may contact you for more information.

Share Your Images
Powered by WorldNow
    Powered by WorldNow
    All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Worldnow and KTBS. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.
    Advertising | EEO Public File | KTBS 3 Public File | KPXJ 21 Public File