Lucas County Children Services is raising awareness for child abuse victims throughout April. More than 1,750 children were victims of child abuse or neglect in Lucas County last year, and LCCS is helping raise awareness by holding events that shed light on the issue.
For the eleventh consecutive year, April 13 is Wear Blue Day. The event is sponsored by LCCS, WTOL, KISS-FM and 101.5 The River. The program asks Lucas County residents to post photos of themselves wearing blue to the LCCS Facebook page, with the hashtag #OhioWearsBlue. Supporters interested in receiving a “Wear Blue” poster can request an electronic file by submitting their contact information here.
On April 28, at 11 am, LCCS will livestream its annual Child Memorial on the agency’s Facebook page. The ceremony will honor nine children whose lives have been lost in the past year. Six of the children being honored were lost to gun violence within the community.
Robin Reese, LCCS Director, says “In 2021, LCCS saw a 22 percent spike in the number of children entering agency custody, reflecting the seriousness of the cases we are encountering. Our numbers have returned to pre-pandemic levels and now exceed them, as our community continues to struggle, particularly with gun violence and substance abuse. By December 31, 2021, we had served more than 13,500 children from nearly 5,300 families. Both are increases from 2020.”
LCCS has been participating in many pilot programs for the state of Ohio to help keep kids safe at home instead of in foster care. Nearly three-quarters of cases last year kept children in the home and provided family resources directly.
For more information on LCCS and the Child Abuse Prevention Month evens, visit the LCCS website.