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2003 News from Mecklenburg County


March 31, 2003

WORKING TO KEEP CHILDREN SAFE IS MONTH'S FOCUS

CHARLOTTE, NC -- Reporting suspected child abuse or neglect is the law in North Carolina, and Mecklenburg County government will help to spread that message this month. April is National Child Abuse Awareness and Prevention Month, and the Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) plans to consider adopting a proclamation asking everyone to do their part.

The BOCC holds its regular meeting at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, April 1, in Council Chambers at the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Government Center, 600 East Fourth Street. The board will consider the proclamation during that meeting.

Members of the Mecklenburg County Child Abuse Awareness Month Coalition (CAAM) will be present to accept the proclamation and to pass out blue ribbons in recognition of the month. The Mecklenburg County Department of Social Services (DSS) and other county government departments are members of CAAM. The Coalition is a public and private partnership of more than 25 Charlotte-Mecklenburg organizations dedicated to working together to prevent child abuse and neglect.

DSS is mandated to keep children safe, and its division of Youth and Family Services investigates child abuse, neglect and dependency. Call the 24-hour DSS Care Line at 704-336-CARE (336-2273) to report suspected abuse or neglect of children.

During the month of April, www.protectingkids.org will be the official Web site for CAAM and will feature information on child abuse and neglect prevention, local events, community resources to prevent and treat victims of child abuse, and current statistics.

"PROTECTING KIDS…Everybody's Job" is a public awareness campaign begun by the Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners in April 2000. The goal is to eliminate preventable child injuries and deaths by informing specific target audiences about how they can take personal responsibility for children in their care and all children. The Mecklenburg County Health Department, the Mecklenburg County Community Child Fatality Prevention and Protection Team, and the Mecklenburg Safe Communities Program are leading the effort to achieve a safer community for children. The focus areas include immunizations for infants and school-age children; firearm safety; safe sleeping arrangements for infants; pedestrian safety; falls injury prevention; motor vehicle safety and child abuse and neglect.



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