Child Care for Special Needs Kids: The Lack of Special Needs Caregivers & What It Means to Families by Matthew Lister
It is hard to ascertain the actual number of children with special needs who get abused by their child-care provider since crime statistics often do not notate whether the victim is special needs or not. And abuse can be very subtle, so it is under reported. But according to a study on Science Direct, special needs kids are three to four times more likely to be abused and/or neglected than children who do not have special needs.
Although there may be many reasons for this alarming fact, it has one key factor: lack of special needs child-care providers. Those who are qualified are not connecting with the special needs community, or not able to get paid a wage that corresponds to their education and responsibilities.
Continued education of child-care providers is essential – those who will be working with special needs children have to have experience, education and a willingness to continue that education. It is up to parents and agencies to be vigilant with those they hire, but up to the provider to have verifiable resources to ensure the parents have confidence in hiring them. Only with quality care will the statistics on special needs child abuse and neglect go down.
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