Child Abuse Hotline Calls Plunge

Child abuse hotline calls plunge during coronavirus pandemic. Here’s why it’s a concern #coronavirus

Missouri officials warned Wednesday that the safety of the state’s most vulnerable children may be at risk after abuse hotline calls plummeted since the onslaught of the coronavirus.

Calls have dropped by 50 percent since March 11, according to the Missouri Department of Social Services. Thousands of kids are home during this pandemic and not at school, which means they are seeing fewer people who may notice signs of abuse and neglect and report it.

“This drastic drop we’ve had in March, it’s scary,” Sara Smith, deputy director for Missouri’s Children’s Division, told The Star Wednesday. “We need to be there, community members need to be there for kids.”

Kansas has seen a similar drop in calls.

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