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Expert: Coronavirus school closures could cause more child abuse


COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) - Experts in the field of family services say school closures due to Coronavirus could be putting some children at an increased risk of abuse and neglect.

Officials from the Colorado Department of Human Services told KRDO approximately forty percent of the calls to the Colorado Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline last month came from teachers and school/childcare staff.

"When children are not in school, calls to the Hotline drop significantly because they are no longer seen every day by school staff," explained Sarah Sparks, a spokesperson for the department. "This is why it is even more important that everyone report their concerns about the safety and well-being of a child or teen when schools are closed."

"We saw a significant number of the calls to the hotline drop the 9th and 10th, Monday and Tuesday," said Minna Castillo Cohen, Director of the Office of Children, Youth and Families at the Colorado Department of Human Services. "It is imperative that we as a community come together to look out for the safety and well-being of all of our kids. Some people think 'Oh, I shouldn't call, it's none of my business.' But we really encourage people to make that call. You don't have to be the expert in knowing if that's child abuse or neglect."

Castillo Cohen urges you to call 1-844-CO-4-KIDS if you suspect abuse or neglect. Trained professionals are there to take your call. You can also visit the DHS website for additional tools.

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Julia Donovan

Julia is a reporter for KRDO. Learn more about Julia here.



  1. They cant even get a simple transfer of custody done within a family, D.S.S. is completely useless.

  2. Of those calls how many are verified to be child abuse and not just overreaction by school staff?

    1. My neighbors kid got frustrated with math and she made the comment, “I can’t do anything right I suck.” And the teacher called DHS. I had to talk to the investigator and verify that the parents are good people and the child was great. They said the teacher was afraid that the parents put to much pressure on her and she was afraid of being punsihed/beat if she let her parents down.
      I was mad. I told the “investigator” that kids get frustrated just like we do, its human and this is nothing to be investigated. Feel bad for my neighbors for being put through that over something that small. THEN later find out the teacher really disliked the parents because they were very opposed to sex ed and were openly opinionated about it online. SMH

  3. More child abuse, more teen pregnancy, more teen smoking, more teen drinking, ect. Stating the obvious is not reporting.

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