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Every day, judges decide the futures of children who have experienced abuse and neglect in a system that is too overburdened to focus adequately on the needs for each child. 


Without the powerful voice of a CASA advocate, children too often return to unsafe homes or languish in long-term foster care, risking future abuse or neglect.

When children grow up without a safe, loving home there are dire long-term consequences such as:

  • Children may not be able to learn at the same rate as their peers and they may struggle with emotional difficulties. Children often come into care at least 1 academic year behind their peers.

  • Children can suffer from long-term health problems, and even death.

  • Children who are shuffled between foster homes are more likely to fail classes and fall behind in their learning and socialization.

  • Few foster children receive normal physical examinations, and they are the most vulnerable to experiencing poor health compared with any other group of children in the United States.

  • For foster children who never find a permanent home and simply age out of the foster care system, the consequences are significant and long-term: only 50% will complete high school, 25% will be homeless, 40% will depend on some form of public assistance, and 27% of males and 10% of females will be incarcerated at least once.

  • Abuse is often generational - breaking the cycle of abuse protects not only the children of today, but the children of tomorrow.

The Department of Human Services (DHS) works hard to keep children safe and healthy, the public plays a key role as well.  DHS depends on the public to report suspected child abuse promptly and unfortunately, child abuse is more common than you may think.  

  • In 2007, there were 64,500 reports of suspected child abuse or neglect in Oregon; 10,716 were proven.

  • In that same year, 12 Oregon children died as a result of abuse and neglect.  

  • About half of children who have experienced abuse and neglect in Oregon are younger than six years old. 

  • Child abuse is frequently associated with:

    • Substance abuse by parent

    • Unemployment

    • Parental involvement and law enforcement

    • Domestic violence

CASA volunteers and staff are Mandatory Reporters required by law to report suspected child abuse and neglect.



    • The Department of Human Services (DHS) depends on the public to report suspected child abuse promptly.

    • Any reasonable suspicion of abuse should be reported; it is NOT the reporter's responsibility to prove it.

    • A report is a request for an assessment of the child's well-being.

    • A Child Protective Service (CPS) worker or law enforcement officer is responsible for investigating and determination.

    • The more information provided about the child, parent, nature and extent of the abuse, the better DHS can access the immediate level of danger. The sooner they are able to obtain information, the more effective they can be during the investigation.

Every day in this country, 1,900 children become victims of abuse or neglect, and four of them will die. Every day.

Please report any reasonable suspicion of abuse or neglect. 




If you suspect a child is being abused, report to a Department of Human Services Child Welfare screener by calling

1-855-503-SAFE (7233)





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