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State receives 3-year grant for the study and prevention of child abuse and neglect

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Michigan’s Department of Health and Human Services is one of five agencies in the country to recieve federal funding to prevent child abuse and neglect.

The department announced Monday it has received $750-thousand over three years to collect data that will help identify children who are most at risk and create prevention plans for stopping abuse.

Bob Wheaton is with MDHHS.

“Going to look forward to finding out as much additional information as we can and use that to determine ways to prevent that from happening and for intervening with families who may be at risk for these types of child maltreatment injuries to occur.”

In 2017 Children’s Protective Service received nearly 300 complaints alleging a child may have died from abuse or neglect in Michigan.

Wheaton said some funds will also go towards raising awareness.

“Some of the funding is going towards increasing awareness of child abuse and neglect. Using social media and tools like that.”

In 2018 an audit of Michigan’s Child Protective Services found the department failed to conduct criminal background checks in 50% of cases involving child abuse and neglect.

Wheaton said the audit was more concerned with the processes and policies of CPS investigations. He said he doesn’t think the audit is related to the grant award.