Groups trying to bring more awareness to the epidemic of child abuse and neglect reports in Nevada studded the lawn outside the Nevada Legislature with silver and blue pinwheels Friday.
Shannon Simmons of Advocates to End Domestic Violence said there are about 3,500 cases of child neglect and abuse in Nevada every year.
The pinwheels, each about a foot high, were planted by third-graders from Bordewich Bray elementary school. She said the pinwheels represent “the bright future all of our kids deserve.”
Amanda Habousch-Deloye of Prevent Child Abuse Nevada said Nevada has one of the highest rates of abuse and neglect per 100,000 people in the nation. She said Nevadans need to be more aware of the telltale signs of abuse or neglect.
She said single parents who are dating some one should see how that person acts around children before leaving their child alone with them. She also suggested vetting baby sitters and others who will be with their child when they aren’t there.
Habousch-Deloye said the abuse can be physical, emotional or sexual but that some 70 percent of the Nevada cases each year are actually neglect.
“Everybody’s responsible,” she said urging people who think they see signs of abuse or neglect to call 911 or the state Division of Child and Family Services.
DCFS receives an estimated 16,000-20,000 reports each year and checks them all out.