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The term of the Commission to Eliminate Child Abuse and Neglect Fatalities expired on March 18, 2016.

Federal Commission to Eliminate Child Abuse and Neglect Fatalities Highlights Importance of Prevention for National Child Abuse Prevention Month

Filed in Press Releases, Uncategorized By on April 10, 2015

Washington, D.C. – The Commission to Eliminate Child Abuse and Neglect Fatalities (CECANF) took part in the April nationwide observance of National Child Abuse Prevention Month by highlighting the importance of prioritizing prevention services for at-risk families. CECANF was established by Public Law 112-275 (112th Congress), the Protect Our Kids Act of 2012, and is tasked by Congress and President with the establishment of a national strategy and recommendations for reducing child fatalities resulting from abuse and neglect.

“A key area of focus for the Commission is the intersection of data, research, practice and policy to be able to identify what is currently working and what isn’t, with the goal of identifying which populations are most at risk,” noted CECANF Chairman Dr. David Sanders. “For example, we know from research that nearly three-quarters of the children who die from abuse were infants and toddlers younger than three. This data can help us prioritize our focus on prevention strategies targeting new parents such as parenting resource programs and safe sleeping programs. It also suggests that we may benefit from broadening the conversation beyond child protective services to look at a multi-disciplinary approach to prevention that could include public health, law enforcement, judiciary and other agencies.”

“Another interesting area of study linked to prevention is current research being conducted around predictive analytics, which is focused on how to enhance data collection to better understand risk. While progress is being made in these areas, what is clear is that we still have a ways to go to align research with both practice and policy in a way that can truly support known prevention strategies. Furthermore, it’s become increasingly clear to the Commission that preventing child abuse and neglect fatalities will only result from improved coordination and collaboration and greater community capacity across a range of agencies and systems.”

As part of its mandate to study the issue, the Commission has hosted public meetings in San Antonio, TX; Tampa, FL; Detroit, MI; Denver, CO; Burlington, VT; Philadelphia, PA; Portland, OR; and Scottsdale, AZ to learn more about state, local, and tribal strategies and programs—across multiple social service systems—that have been effective in reducing maltreatment fatalities to children both known and not known to child protective services (CPS).

The Commission has also taken part in a deliberation session in Phoenix, AZ and a Research Roundtable in Philadelphia, PA.

Additional meetings are planned for 2015 in Tennessee, Utah, Wisconsin, and New York. For more information on the work of the Commission and information gathered during its public meetings, go to

Commission members welcome the opportunity to hear from stakeholders including advocacy leaders, legislators, local and county leaders, non-profit organizations, minority representatives including tribes, academics, law enforcement, judiciary, clergy, educators, parents, victims, and the public on this issue. Comments can be submitted online via the Commission’s website.

The legislation mandates that the Commission submit a report to the President and Congress on these issues within two years (with the potential to extend the deadline by an additional year).


About The Commission

The Commission to Eliminate Child Abuse and Neglect Fatalities is a federal agency established by legislation to study and make recommendations on eliminating child abuse and neglect fatalities. The Commission was formed as a result of the “Protect Our Kids Act” and is made up of six Presidential appointees and six Congressional appointees. For more information, please go to


About National Child Abuse Prevention Month

In 1983, President Reagan proclaimed April to be the first National Child Abuse Prevention month. The Children’s Bureau’s Office on Child Abuse and Neglect (OCAN) works to promote greater awareness of issues related to prevention of child abuse and neglect, and to promote the social and emotional well-being of children and families. During the month of April and throughout the year, communities are encouraged to share child abuse and neglect prevention awareness strategies and activities and promote prevention across the country. For more information, go to

Media Notes: To request an interview with a member of the Commission or request more information about the Commission, please contact Jennifer Devlin at 703-876-1714 or


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