Guest editorial: 

Pam Darnall

Family & Children's Place

Recent reports that measure the well-being of children in Indiana give all of us a reason for pause and concern. In 2012, more than 122,000

Indiana children were sexually or physically abused; in 2016 that number climbed to over 225,000 reported cases.

And residents in Southern Indiana represent a fair amount of these cases despite having some of the state's smallest counties.

This data is consistent with what we see at Family and Children's Place, with 6,000 children and family members served annually.

Since 2015, demand for our services in Southern Indiana has continued to climb and just last year, we helped over 1,000 people who live across the river. That's a 10% percent increase in 3 years. But even more tragic, in most cases, this abuse comes from someone the child knows.

With families gathering to celebrate the holidays, this time of year can be especially dangerous for our communities' smallest citizens.

Skyrocketing increases in child abuse are unacceptable, and all of us must be part of the effort to reverse these trends.

Whether it is paying closer attention to changes in children's behavior or being more mindful of the adults we allow to be around our children, we all have a responsibility and a role to play in keeping kids safe.

I'm Pam Darnall and that's my point of view.