Maltreatment cases of young children (0 to 6 years old) account for 28% of all child maltreatment cases in Korea. Especially of all child maltreatment fatalities, 60% involve children under 5 years old. Young children including infants and toddlers are not capable of protecting themselves from maltreatment by grown-ups. They are likely to be victims of fatal child maltreatment, but often the maltreatment cases are not found and reported.
In this context, this study tries to understand maltreatment of young children in Korea and to find its predictors. We utilized data from Korean National Child Protection Agency and reviewed previous literature on maltreatment of young children. Most importantly, this study aimed to develop a guideline to identify and to prevent maltreatment of young children. The study first reviewed previous studies on maltreatment of young children regarding the prevalence, predictors, prevention guidelines, etc. It also analyzed data from National Child Maltreatment Information System(NCMIS) which local child protection agencies report their cases. Data from 2012 to 2015 was analyzed. Logistic regression analysis, latent class analysis and descriptive analysis including frequencies and means were conducted. Also, the authors examined individual case records to examine the reasons of child maltreatment report to CPA. Guidelines for preventing child maltreatment and a checklist were developed to identify and report child maltreatment cases with early signals and evidence from children, caregivers and situations before maltreatment becomes more serious.
The results showed that the total reported maltreatment cases in the National Child Abuse Information System from 2012 to 2015 are 51,071, of which 17,866 cases involved young children. Latent class analysis on maltreatment at home found 4 subgroups and their characteristics regarding children, perpetrators, family and the case. The groups are the neglect group, the emotional maltreatment group, the low risk group, and the physical and emotional maltreatment group. As to maltreatment occurring out of home, the analysis found 2 groups and their characteristics regarding children, perpetrators and cases. They are the group of multiple type maltreatment except sexual abuse and the group of multiple type maltreatment including sexual abuse. In regard of the reasons for reporting, the results showed signals or reasons of reporting were categorized as physical abuse, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, neglect, and other acts.
Guidelines for the prevention of infant abuse suggest to protect the rights of young children and for caregivers to control stress and anger. A checklist of guidelines helps to identify and report child maltreatment with information from parents, teachers, neighbors, etc. It aims to prevent child maltreatment becoming more serious by detecting relatively less serious cases in the beginning and by actively coping with maltreatment.
This study suggests that careful monitoring or preventive approach for families at risk of child maltreatment who have risk factors of children and perpetrators. Also continuing education for teachers at child care centers, nurseries, and kindergarten as well as child welfare workers are important. Checklist for prevention should also be distributed among these professionals for early identification and intervention of child maltreatment. It is necessary for the government to make child welfare policies and programs to reduce lack of cognitive knowledge and skills, economic difficulties, stress, and alcohol abuse of caregivers, which were found to be predictors of child maltreatment.
Table Of Contents
Ⅱ. 이론적 배경
Ⅲ. 영유아 학대 현황 분석
Ⅳ. 가이드라인 개발
Ⅴ. 연구의 함의 및 제언