Mighty Blog

Recognizing National Child Abuse Awareness and Prevention Month in April

April is National Child Abuse Awareness and Prevention Month. This month recognizes the importance of families and communities working together to prevent child abuse and neglect.  

At Children’s Minnesota, our team of experts at the Midwest Children’s Resource Center (MCRC) provides specialized care for kids who are affected by abuse.  

Kids who come through the doors of MCRC have been through some of the scariest moments of their life. The MCRC team does everything possible to make them feel safe and comfortable while they’re in our care and help transition them successfully to the future. This April, we’d like to spotlight MCRC’s critical work and dedication to supporting kids in our community. 

About MCRC 

MCRC is a child advocacy center (CAC) and clinic located within the Children’s Minnesota St. Paul campus. Founded in 1986, MCRC offers medical evaluations and case management in alleged child abuse cases, serious neglect and witness to violence. Our staff also provide 24/7 consultations to other medical subspecialists and community stakeholders such as child protection and law enforcement.      

Each year, MCRC serves more than 1,000 children ages 0-18 and uses a coordinated response to maltreatment that minimizes trauma and maximizes opportunities for healing and recovery.  

The dedicated team at MCRC consists of two board certified child abuse pediatricians, eight advanced practice providers, nurses, four licensed psychologists, a patient/family advocate, a patient service coordinator and business supervisor/multidisciplinary team facilitator.  

Learn more about the services and resources offered at MCRC.  

Key facts and statistics 

  • Child neglect is the most common form of child maltreatment. 
  • The top three reporters of child maltreatment are legal and law enforcement personnel, education personnel and medical personnel. 
  • In Minnesota, 41% of calls made to child protection result in a child protection assessment or investigation and 59% of calls are “screened out.” 
  • In 2021, Minnesota child protection responded to 24,526 cases of alleged child maltreatment resulting in 24.2 out of 1000 children receiving a child protection response.  
  • There is severe racial disparity and disproportionality in the Minnesota child protection system. Black or African American and American Indian/Alaska Native children are 2.4 and 5.2 times more likely than white children to be involved in a child protection response. This is likely due to personal and systemic bias across many decision-making points in a complex system. 
  • Approximately 18% of children who receive a child protection response will be reported to child protection again within 12 months.  
  • Approximately 9% of child protection responses result in a child being in out-of-home care for some time (days to years).  

Source: Minnesota’s Child Maltreatment Report, 2021. Minnesota Department of Human Services 

Alexandra Rothstein