Press Release from the Office of Governor William P. Clements Jr. regarding plan to combat child abuse, March 19, 1982
"Texas Governor Term 1, 1979-1982"
Texas A&M University
Cushing Memorial Library and Archives
"Governor William P. Clements, Jr. Official State Papers, 1st Term, 1979-1983"
PR Press Office | 1st term
Texas State library and archives commission
Clements Texas Papers
CT k ICE OF GOVERNOR WILLIAM P. CLEMENTS, JR. March 19, 1982 For immediate release: Governor Bill Clements today announced his support of the Texas Federation of Women's Clubs campaign to combat child abuse. Approximately 50,000 cases of child abuse were reported during 1981, many involving several members of a family. However, studies indicate that the actual incidence of abuse may be as much as ten times higher than actually reported. Legislation increasing penalties for crimes against children was a part of Governor Clements' anti-crime program which passed the legislature last year and which he signed into law. A 1981 survey, conducted by Sam Houston State University, estimates 283,000 to 400,000 children, 14 years and under are abused annually in our state. Moreover, a recent U.S. study reveals that Physical abuse is rarely a one-time act. On the average, an abused child is subject to 10.5 assaults per year. The American Pediatrician Association added that neglect and abuse are the leading cause of death in children under the age of three. In an effort to address this critical issue, the Texas Federation of Women's Clubs is coordinating a statewide awareness program to encourage the develooment of citizen task forces designed to educate the community. The program is supported by a glant from the Governor's Office of General Counsel and Criminal Justice. Betty Drake, Chairman of the Board of Directors for irtly1C, has been travelling extensively across the state and has noted that professionals working with battered children are in need of help. Due to the magnitude of this problem, Governor Clements called on all Texas citizens to lend their support to the program. "We can no longer close our eyes and ears to the thousands of children who are brutally mistreated," Governor Clements said.