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Eradication

of child abuse begins with building informed, empowered communities with the courage to talk openly about this difficult issue. Child abuse — particularly child sexual abuse — is a crime of secrecy. As high-profile cases capture media attention, social outrage continues to drive the conversation out of the shadows. Open conversation is the most effective tool we have to eradicate child abuse. Start the dialogue. Inspire others to talk openly.

Parents

educate your children about child abuse in an age-appropriate way. If you’re uncertain how to approach it, contact your child’s physician, teacher, or Partners' Children’s Advocacy Center (CAC) to learn about ways to have this discussion.

Community

start a conversation with responsible family members, co-workers, other parents, teachers and coaches about what you have learned.

Recognize

and report suspected abuse. Learn the signs and symptoms of abuse. Report abuse when it is suspected. Contact law enforcement or child protective services to get help.

Be the One With Courage who combats the secrecy that enables child abuse.

Overcoming the Stigma of Mental Health Disorders

Unfortunately, negative attitudes and beliefs toward people who have a mental health condition are common. Learn what you can do about stigma. Stigma can lead to discrimination. Discrimination may be obvious and direct, such as someone making a negative remark about mental illness, or it may be unintentional or subtle, such as avoiding someone because s/he “might be” unstable, violent or dangerous.

Here are some ways you can deal with stigma:

Seek treatment for yourself and your family.

Don't let stigma create self-doubt and shame. Stigma doesn't just come from others.

Don't isolate yourself. Reach out with compassion, support and understanding to others.

Don't equate the person with illness. People are not the disorder.

Join a support group. Partners can help.

If you or your child has a mental illness that affects learning, find out what school programs can help. Discrimination against students because of a mental health condition is against the law, and educators at primary, secondary and college levels are required to accommodate students as best they can.

Be an advocate. Speak out against stigma.

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