Sheriff Amazi joins national fight against child abuse

Published 6:31 am Friday, April 27, 2012

Twenty-two law enforcement leaders from across Minnesota — including Mower County Sheriff Terese Amazi — joined a nationwide letter calling on Congress to support proven child abuse prevention strategies.

The letter emphasized the benefits of voluntary home visiting services, which help new parents cope with the stresses of raising a young child.

Amazi — in light of the Dexter couple who chained their son to his bed — recently pushed for legislation that passed and now makes some child abuse crimes in Minnesota felonies, where they used to be gross misdemeanors.

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Child abuse and neglect claimed the lives of at least 1,560 children nationwide in 2010, including 14 Minnesota children. More than 1,560 law enforcement leaders and survivors — one for every child who lost their life to abuse or neglect — have signed the letter urging Congress to protect and expand funding for evidence-based home visiting services.

At least 4,462 Minnesota children suffered abuse or neglect in 2010 — 85 every week, on average, according to a press release.