Child abuse and neglect incidence rates are approximately ten times higher than the incidence rates for cancer. The incident rates for child abuse and neglect are 40 children per 1,000 children every year. The incidence rates for cancer patients are 3.9 people per 1,000 people every year. According to Frank Putnam (2005), “We find an incidence rate for child abuse and neglect that is about ten times as high as the incidence rate for all forms of cancer…There is a multi-billion-dollar research base reliably renewed on an annual basis for cancer treatment and prevention. Nothing remotely similar to this exists for child abuse and neglect” (p. 1). The 2001 federal fiscal year budget was $3.74 billion for the National Cancer Institution. Between all of CAPTA’s grants combined, the total of monetary governmental support comes to approximately $72 million. While cancer research is an incredible thing, child abuse and neglect programs should be well funded in order to help more children. In addition to more children being helped, if funding for abuse awareness increased, there would possibly be more jobs open for social workers and other types of advocates. (The Leadership Council on Child Abuse and Interpersonal Violence, 2005).
According to the National Clearinghouse on Child Abuse and Neglect Information (2005), “…few in-depth and rigorous financial analyses have been conducted to give us a solid understanding of the total costs of maltreatment.” (p. 11). The reason that we do not know the extent of the effects is that it is hard to prove a causal relationship between the maltreatment and the costs. Costs of maltreatment include Child Protective Services, foster care, law enforcement, medical bills, and more. Studies show that care for children removed from their home alone increased from $610 million in 1986 to $3.67 billion in 1996. This is a very significant leap in cost for only ten years. Farther studies show that in a period of 6 years, the government spent approximately $71.7 billion on maltreatment costs. (National Child Abuse Coalition, 2005).
A study by the National Institute of Justice shows that each case of child abuse costs approximately $60,000 to the victim alone. This adds to be an annual cost of approximately $56 billion to the victims and taxpayers. CAPTA is supported by the government by keeping it a regulated policy as well as monetary support by grants. (The Leadership Council on Child Abuse and Interpersonal Violence, 2005).
While children benefit most from CAPTA, entire families benefit as well. CAPTA has raised awareness for child abuse and neglect. This makes it easier for families to recognize when suspicious activities occur, which gives the members of the families an opportunity to help the child before large amounts of harm occur.
Children are the intended beneficiaries of CAPTA. They are well represented by the act through defining child abuse as well as the reauthorizations and changes in the policy to prevent...