Melynda Ciccotti, Champions for Children – Prevent Child Abuse Hampton Roads

In 2015, Virginia Department of Social Services reported that nearly 50,000 children in the Commonwealth were reported as being abused or neglected in Virginia. In Hampton Roads, there are nearly four children in every thousand who suffer some sort of abuse.

On the podcast to talk about child abuse prevention is Melynda Ciccotti, executive director of Champions for Children: Prevent Child Abuse Hampton Roads.

Ciccotti is trained in school psychology and childhood development and has spent years combatting child abuse, including unsafe situations. She has seen first hand how kids are affected by traumatic personal, unsafe and harmful environments.

In addition to discussing the organization and its initiatives, we also talk about Erin’s Law, working with children with behavioral disorders, such as the recent Parkland, Fla. shooter, Nikolas Cruz, and the organization’s latest initiative, “No Hit Zone.”

According to Ciccotti, No Hit Zone’s focus “is both behavioral and educational, working to develop safe places for children and adults where physical punishment and physical hitting is not allowed. The education of all adults about the negative effects of hitting is a core component of the campaign.”

Links of note
Champions for Children: Prevent Child Abuse Hampton Roads
Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect
Virginia Performs: Child Abuse and Neglect (metrics)
Erin’s Law (2018 General Assembly Session)
Merryn: Virginia wrong to reject Erin’s Law
Erin’s Law Website
Florida shooting suspect Nikolas Cruz: Guns, depression and a life in trouble

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