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Press Release
September 25, 2008

Children's Services Announces Citywide Public Education Forums on Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect

New York - Administration for Children's Services Commissioner John B. Mattingly today announced a series of public education forums to be held Citywide to help the public understand how to recognize and report child abuse and neglect. Beginning next month in the Bronx, Children’s Services will be holding forums in each of the five boroughs, as part of a collaborative education and awareness initiative with Safe Horizons, the child advocacy organization.

Children's Services Announces Citywide Public Education Forums on Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect

“The best way for all New Yorkers to help us keep children safe is to immediately report child abuse or neglect by calling 311,” said Commissioner Mattingly. “We’re scheduling these forums to educate everyone in our community. The best way to protect children is for every one of us to know the signs of abuse and neglect and to report any legitimate suspicions immediately.”   

The public forums are scheduled for the Bronx on October 28; Brooklyn on October 29; Staten Island on November 6, Queens on November 12, and Manhattan on December 11. (See the list below for dates and locations and information on how to RSVP).

Speaking today at the launch of the Safe Horizons’ Hope Shining child abuse prevention campaign at the Manhattan Child Advocacy Center, Children’s Services Deputy Commissioner for Community and Government Affairs, Anne Williams-Isom, welcomed the efforts of Children’s Services’ partners at Safe Horizons to educate the general public.

“ACS regularly meets with mandated reporters in schools, social services and law enforcement, and a majority of abuse and neglect reports each year come from these professionals,” said Williams-Isom. “Typically, of all the reports made to the State child abuse hotline, less than 10 percent of these reports were made by the general public including friends, neighbors, and other relatives. We – and our partners at Safe Horizons -- want to actively encourage these bystanders to make the call when they believe a child is being hurt or neglected.”     

The forums will give the public specific information on how to recognize the signs of child abuse, how to report any reasonable suspicions of child abuse and how ACS investigates reports of child abuse and neglect. The forums will be conducted by Children’s Services experienced child protection staff.

For more information about the signs of child abuse or neglect, please visit the ACS Web site at www.nyc.gov/acs.

The public forums will be held on the following dates at the locations below. Space is limited; anyone wanting to attend a forum must RSVP by emailing Report.Abuse@ACS.nyc.gov or calling 212-341-2838. Please leave your name and the forum you’re planning to attend.

Bronx - Oct. 28th
JCCA   
555 Bergen Ave.
Bronx, NY 10455  
6:00-7:30pm

Brooklyn - Oct. 29th
New York Public Library
665 New Lots Avenue
(corner Barbey Street),
Brooklyn, NY 11207
6:00-7:30pm

Staten Island - Nov. 6th
Brighton Heights Reformed Church  
320 St Marks Place
Staten Island, NY 10301
6:00 to 8:00pm

Queens - Nov. 12th
Community Mediation
89-64 163 Street
Jamaica NY, 11432
6:00-7: 30 pm

Manhattan - Dec. 11th
Manhattan Community Board 12
711 West 168th Street (Ground Floor)
New York, NY  10032
6:00-7: 30 pm

Contact: ACS Press Office at 212-341-0999


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