None of the reasons schools, churches, youth groups, or other entities use to explain why they failed to report child sex abuse are good enough. None of them excuse the inaction of the adults we trusted to protect our children in Skokie, Northbrook, and other Chicago-area communities.
These Arguments Don’t Work
The supervisors at an entity may argue that:
- They tried to handle it internally. Illinois law is clear about who must report suspected child sex abuse and how to do it.
- They were concerned that, if word got out, it could harm their reputation. This is irrelevant. They had a responsibility to your child and a responsibility to report alleged child sex abuse in the state of Illinois.
- They didn’t know it was happening. The better question is whether they should have known it was happening. If they should have known that sexual abuse was occurring and decided to look the other way, they should be held accountable.
Any or all of these arguments may be true; yet, a child was still violated in an intimate and inexcusable way.
They Are Just Excuses
Instead, you can send the loud and clear message that these arguments are not good enough. Your child’s mental and physical health—his innocence and childhood—are worth more than these excuses.
If you know a parent whose child has been sexually abused, please share this blog post with him. Let him know that multiple parties may be responsible for what happened and that help is available for children who have been sexually abused.