Calling It In
Attorney General Frosh Announces New Phone Hotline to Report Child Sex Abuse
“Every 98 seconds, an American is sexually assaulted. And every 11 minutes, that victim is a child.” - RAINN
Over the past few years with the rise of the #MeToo movement and celebrity exposure, media has given the subject of sexual abuse and harassment a platform for discussion. Through these networks, we have learned that for a myriad of reasons, 3 out of 4 cases of sexual assault go unreported - and these are for adult cases. But children are also sexually abused, and in this most vulnerable group, silence may be greater.
It is difficult to ascertain the number of children who are sexually abused because it is often unreported. As with adult cases, experts believe the numbers far exceed the reported cases to authorities; in fact in Maryland, it is estimated that there are at least 31,930 cases of child sexual assault annually, and the system fails to learn about approximately 28,100 of them.
In order to make reporting more accessible so that survivors get the help they need, Maryland Attorney General Brian E. Frosh announced that his office has established a new telephone hotline for individuals to report child sexual abuse.
The new phone number to call the Office of the Attorney General Child Sex Abuse Hotline is 410-576-6312. Victims of an abuser associated with a school or place of worship, or individuals who have knowledge of such abuse, can share this information by calling the hotline number or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Callers may be asked, but are not required to submit, the following information: the caller’s name and contact information, name of abuser, where the abuse occurred, timeframe of the abuse, and any other details they would like to report. In some cases the information reported to their office may be referred to the local State's Attorney where the abuse occurred, but it is the caller’s choice to submit their name and contact information.
Reporting sexual abuse is an important step to stopping the abuse altogether. Hopefully with this new hotline, help is just a call away.