Daycare Sex Abuse Lawyer

When a child is sexually abused in their daycare, preschool, or similar childcare facility, it can leave them with lifelong trauma and consequences. Our daycare sex abuse lawyers can help families pursue justice against negligent facilities.

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Preschool, Daycare, and Childcare Sexual Abuse Lawsuits

Instances of child sex abuse can be detrimental to parents and family members, especially when it occurs in what is supposed to be a trusted setting. Cases involving sexual assault of a child, while in any type of childcare, are sensitive subjects that need to be brought to light in order to spread awareness of these risks.

Working parents largely depend on daycares, childcare programs, and pre-schools to care for their children for a majority of the day, making it unfathomable to think that child sex abuse is a prevalent risk within these institutions. While parents can do research on multiple daycare providers to try to ensure their child’s wellbeing, unfortunately, there is no guarantee that their child will be safe. That is why staying alert and taking immediate action if and when abuse occurs is key to protecting your child.

If you suspect your child is being sexually abused or had been sexually abused by a childcare provider, the daycare sex abuse lawyers at Edwards Pottinger can help you understand your legal rights and options for holding the relevant parties accountable.

What is Daycare Child Sex Abuse?

Child abuse in any form can have serious long-term consequences for children. There are four common types of child abuse: physical abuse, emotional abuse, neglect, and sexual abuse.

Sexual abuse is the pressuring or coercing of a child to participate in sexual acts, including fondling, penetration, and other sexual acts. However, it is not always physical. Other examples of child sex abuse include exposing oneself to a child, sexual dialogue, psychological pressure or coercion to engage in sexual acts, or masturbation in front of a child.

How Common is Daycare Sexual Abuse?

Sadly, child sex abuse is prevalent in many settings, and daycare facilities are not an exception. According to the Darkness to Light, an organization that fights against child sexual abuse, in 2017, 2,237 daycare employees were found to be abusing the children that were left in their care. Unfortunately, the workers of these facilities are not the only ones capable of committing this crime. According to statistics, 40% of children who are sexually abused are abused by older or more powerful children.

At Edwards Pottinger, our child care sex abuse attorneys have the expertise to help you hold negligent daycare staff and owners accountable for the harm your child and family may have suffered.

Common Warning Signs of Possible Daycare Sex Abuse

Child sex abuse in any setting can have serious consequences to the physical and mental well-being of a child. Studying the warning signs of child sex abuse is vital in preventing and protecting a child at risk of sexual abuse. Warning signs of child sex abuse can be difficult to spot so it is important to trust your instinct above all else.

According to the Rape, Abuse, and Incest National Network (RAINN), warning signs for child sex abuse can be physical, emotional, or behavioral.

Some physical warning signs of child sex abuse include:

  • Signs of physical trauma in the child’s private area, such as bruising, swelling, or blood
  • Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs)

Some emotional warning signs of child sex abuse include:

  • A change in mood or overall personality
  • Excessive worry or fears; anxiety
  • A change in eating habits, including eating disorders
  • Self-harm
  • Decrease in self-esteem
  • Fear of being alone; nightmares
  • New, unexplained health problems
  • Decrease of interest in hobbies, school, or friends

Behavioral warning signs that may indicate possible child sex abuse include:

  • Regressive behaviors like thumb-sucking or bedwetting
  • Overly compliant behavior
  • Sexual behavior that is inappropriate for their age
  • Spending an excessive amount of time alone
  • Excessive dialogue or knowledge about sexual topics
  • Being secretive
  • Not wanting to be left alone with certain individuals

Although these warning signs can be very different, they are not always precise, so listening to your instincts is very important. Observing emotional, physical, and behavioral changes in your children will give you the best opportunity to recognize and stop daycare sex abuse.

How Can You Prevent Daycare Sex Abuse?

There are several things a parent can do to help prevent daycare sex abuse. You should properly research the daycare facilities you are interested in before enrolling your child. You should also visit prospective facilities and ask questions regarding interactions between staff and children and the policies and procedures the facility has in place to keep children safe. Visiting the daycares will also give you the opportunity to personally observe interactions between daycare employees and the children, as well as among the children themselves.

It is also important to ask about the hiring process for employees. Ask if employees have undergone background checks and have prior experience caring for children. Checking references and researching if any reports have been made against the daycare center can also help you find the right facility for your child.

In addition to carefully selecting the childcare center, you can also talk to your child and teach them what to do in a potentially threatening situation. This will hopefully ensure that your child has the tools to protect themselves if something were to happen.

What To Do if You Suspect Your Child Has Been Sexually Abused

If you suspect that your child was sexually abused in their daycare or preschool, you may want to contact local authorities, such as the police or Child Protective Services, or you can contact the Child Help National Abuse Hotline to help you navigate the process of reporting an act of child sex abuse.

You may also be able to take legal action against the owners of the daycare, preschool, or childcare facility where the abuse occurred. A civil lawsuit can be filed against any organization that may have facilitated the abuse or failed to take the proper actions to prevent it. Many survivors have successfully made claims against daycares and other companies that serve children for failing to protect them from sexual predators.

If a daycare or childcare organization employed or otherwise allowed your abuser or your child’s abuser to interact with minors and commit sex abuse, they may be held liable for the harm you have suffered. Some acts of child sexual abuse go unreported for years due to feelings of fear and shame, but even if you are now an adult, legal action may still be possible. Contacting a daycare sex abuse attorney at Edwards Pottinger can help you understand the statute of limitations regarding the abuse and explain the process of pursuing legal action.

It is not easy to speak up about sex abuse, especially when it deals with our children and a violation of trust with their caregivers, but our child sex abuse law firm is ready and well-equipped to help you fight for justice with patience and compassion.

Why Hire Edwards Pottinger?

If you or your child was sexually abused at a childcare facility, our attorneys are ready to help you navigate the process of filing a lawsuit. Our legal team has the necessary experience and tools to help you hold the relevant institution accountable. By speaking up today, you can help prevent other children from being similarly harmed and you can take one step closer to receiving the closure you need. Contact Edwards Pottinger now to learn more about your legal options during a free legal consultation.

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