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The welfare of children across Pennsylvania took a downward turn, according to the last report from the state Department of Human Services.

Children exposed to drugs, violence and other harsh environments are frightened and/or may be victims of physical violence or incest or suffer from post-traumatic stress (PTS) like victims of war crimes.

Children environments can include victimization by terrorist acts, divorce, bad school experiences and tough neighborhoods that causes major stress.  Many children show symptoms of what NCM calls, "The silent cry for help," which can usually only be heard by a trained and discerning ear.

Research shows that sometimes to minimize damage, these children can rely on "adaptive distancing," in order to maintain pursuits and seek fulfillment in life through outreach activities, school and friendships who share the same or similar experiences.

Reports of child abuse

Statewide, 4,203 children were abused - nearly half of them sexually - over a one-year period, according to the agency's 2015 Annual Child Protective Services Report. In total, 34 child deaths were confirmed as having been related to abuse.

The tally - which reflects the number of substantiated child abuse cases - represents a 25 percent increase over a one-year period. Forty-seven percent of the substantiated cases involved child sexual abuse.

State officials logged 40,590 cases of suspected reports, an increase of 11,317 from 2014. The substantiation rate (the percentage of reports in which abuse was confirmed) dropped from 11.4 percent to 10.4 percent.


Substantiated Reports

Among the findings of the report:

•4,203 reports of suspected child abuse were substantiated - 863 more than in 2014.

•1,960 substantiated reports involved sexual abuse.

abuse higher for children of A single parent

•Seven reports of suspected student abuse were included in the reports.

•Some children were involved in more than one incident of abuse.

•61 percent of child victims - or 2,558 - were girls; 39 percent were boys.

•Instances of child abuse was highest for children living with a single parent."

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