Bertie Commissioners support children

Published 12:00 am Friday, August 10, 2007

R-C News-Herald Editorial

The Bertie County Commissioners took an important step Monday.

With their contribution to Stop Shaken Baby Syndrome Inc., the board stood firmly with the children of Bertie County. It was an impressive show of knowledge and concern by the county fathers.

Stop SBS is one of the many organizations in the Roanoke-Chowan region that is working to put a stop to the number of child abuse cases. While its initiative is specific, its general goal of stopping child abuse is the same as many others. It is important for the children.

Stop SBS Inc. will focus their efforts on prevention. Statistics show that when caregivers are educated about the dangers of shaking a child, they are less likely to do it.

Shaking a baby is child abuse. It is certainly not the only form of abuse that exists here and all over the world, but it is one that we know alarmingly little about.

With the project of education that Stop SBS Inc. and Roanoke-Chowan Hospital are planning to implement, new parents will be aware that shaking a child is child abuse.

The organization will purchase a Shaken Baby Simulator which will show how quickly a child can have permanent damage because of being shaken. It will also be stressed that one quarter of the children who are shaken do not survive the injuries.

We need more people to step up and take on the work of stopping child abuse. Children not only deserve our protection, they need it.

It takes people who are willing to sacrifice of themselves to get involved. It takes quality leaders like the ones in Bertie County who have the foresight to know that saving a child from abuse is important.

Too many people who have custody of children are not “parents.” They are people who have children. Too many are not concerned enough with the safety of the minors in their care.

Real parents do not shake children; real parents do not hit children and real parents do not neglect children.

Real parents sacrifice of themselves to do what is right for the children. They learn to walk away or seek help when they can no longer handle the frustration that sometimes comes when a child is “fussy.”

There is an old proverb that says “It takes a village to raise a child.” Whether that is possible anymore or not remains to be seen, but there is no doubt that we must work together to prevent children from being abused.

The Bertie County Commissioners took the bold step of being part of the solution, not the problem. We commend them for that choice and hope many others will do the same no matter how they choose to be involved.