(2) If 1 percent of severely abused children suffer permanent disabilities, the annual cost of community services (estimated at $13 per day) for treating developmentally disabled children would increase by $1.1 million.
(3) The future lost productivity of severely abused children is $658-1300 million annually, if their impairments limit their potential earnings by only 5-10 percent.
Research on general problems of violence, substance addiction, social inequality, unemployment, poor education, and the treatment of children in the social services system is incomplete without attention to child maltreatment issues.
Research on child maltreatment can play a key role in informing major social policy decisions concerning the services that should be made available to children, especially children in families or neighborhoods that experience significant stress and violence.
Reports of child maltreatment alone also reveal little about the interactions among individuals, families, communities, and society that lead to such incidents.
American society has not yet recognized the complex origins or the profound consequences of child victimization.In the period 1979 through 1988, about 2,000 child deaths (ages 0-17) were recorded annually as a result of abuse and neglect (Mc Clain et al., 1993), and an additional 160,000 cases resulted in serious injuries in 1990 alone (Daro and Mc Curdy, 1991).However tragic and sensational, the counts of deaths and serious injuries provide limited insight into the pervasive long-term social, behavioral, and cognitive consequences of child abuse and neglect.Yet little is invested in understanding the factors that predispose, mitigate, or prevent the behavioral and social consequences of child maltreatment.The panel has identified five key reasons why child maltreatment research should be viewed as a central nexus of more comprehensive research activity.The services required for children who have been abused or neglected, including medical care, family counseling, foster care, and specialized education, are expensive and are often subsidized by governmental funds.The General Accounting Office (1991) has estimated that these services cost more than 0 million annually.These decisions include the selection of cases of suspected child abuse and neglect for investigation and determinations about which children should remain with families in which abuse has occurred.Individuals making such decisions will benefit from informed guidance on the effectiveness and consequences of various social interventions that address child maltreatment.Research on child maltreatment can provide scientific information that will help with the solution of a broad range of individual and social disorders.Research in this field is demonstrating that experiences with child abuse and neglect are a major component of many child and adult mental and behavioral disorders, including delayed development, poor academic performance, delinquency, depression, alcoholism, substance abuse, deviant sexual behaviors, and domestic and criminal violence.